Mon | Feb 19, 2018

Kelly's World | Olympics fever

Published:Monday | August 15, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce carries the flag of Jamaica during the opening ceremony for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, last Friday.

The world is focused on the Olympics, so to write about something else would be a tad daft.

So Rio, here I come. Now, unfortunately, because of deadlines, this column went to press before both 100-metre track races. So at the time of writing this, I had no idea whether Shelly-Ann or Elaine kick-off the US pot, or if Mr Bolt and Blake shut Gatlin up once and for all. So as you read this, you're either grinning from ear to ear, or crying in your Flair, or on your monitor/phone screen if you're online. Regardless, all our athletes have done well. They have represented Jamaica with pride and have brought tremendous positive exposure to the country. So win, lose, or tie, we should be satisfied.

Speaking of satisfaction, I will admit I was a little bummed after the women's 100-metre breaststroke final. But mi love Alia gone to bed! Just likkle sorry she neva do a better time. Thing is, Jamaicans have become spoiled by our success in recent Olympics (Bolt, Shelly, and company), so anything less than gold and silver, we start frown. But for Alia to become the first Jamaican woman to reach the finals in two consecutive Olympics is a tremendous feat. Mek wi see likkle more money inna di pool now, please.




Now, you know my views on the Olympics and most of the events. I'm not sure how many of these disciplines should be included at such a high level. For some of them, like tennis and golf, I think the Olympics is actually a step down. Both those sports have four 'major' tournaments annually, with others that also attract much attention globally. So why do they need to be in the Olympics as well?

And don't think I'm being biased towards certain sports I have no chance of playing. I love football dearly, but I'm not sure if I want it in the Olympics. The major leagues in the world already attract our attention enough. This rule about fielding mostly under-23 players doesn't help. Players are getting big contracts from dem a 18 or 19, so the Olympics isn't providing 'real' exposure for them. OK, so the average man will get to see some players they don't know, but I'm still not a fan. The really big players in the world don't always go anyway because of club commitments. So what's the point?

But fine. Let's say we're not going to take any of these current sports out. Well then I think we should put some sports in. How about push cart derby? Consider the push cart the bobsleigh of the summer Olympics. Now I realise these are two sports Jamaica may do well in. Hey, about time we tipped the scales in our own favour. We're constantly behind other nations in terms of infrastructure, sponsorship, etc, so why shouldn't we gain an advantage in something? We a smaddy too!

Anyway, best of luck to the rest of the Rio team. Do your best, folks. That's all we can ask for.


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