I am a huge sports fan and for me, the Beijing Olympics have been stunning.
Watching the 100m final blew me away, I never imagined I would ever witness such a feat in my lifetime. For Usain Bolt to destroy a World record is one thing, to destroy it whilst jogging is simply mind-blowing. I have not missed watching a 100m final live since 1980 with Alan Wells conquering the World in Moscow. My most vivid memories are when I woke at 3am in 1988 to see Ben Johnson destroy Carl Lewis’ dream of 100m gold. This was swiftly followed the next day when we woke to hear of Johnson’s drug test failure.
With Team GB setting World Records in the pool and velodrome, it is clear we are in a great position going into the next Olympics in London 2012, let’s hope the athletics team find some investment so we can feature in the showcase events.
But after all of this, for me, the most endearing image was that of a broken man. Liu Xiang, the Chinese hero, pin-up and megastar. For the past four years, he has had the entire National look to him for inspiration and hope. He would have won the gold in the 110m hurdles and been the story of the Olympics. The poor guy arrived for the first race carrying a devastating injury. The worst a hurdler can have, an Achilles tendon injury.
Seeing him prepare for the race, holding his ankle, almost praying it would magically fix itself is something I will never forget. After putting in immense hard work and effort, dreaming of nothing else for years and looking at failure when you have absolutely zero control, it shows how cruel life can be.
I look at myself and things going on right now, and could easily be in the same position, just not so public.
Have you ever had a situation where you prepared so well, worked so hard etc but in the end had the dream taken away from you by no fault of your own? I’d love to hear what happened to you after 🙂