Rio bids Olympics adeus
The 16 Day sporting carnival came to an end at Rio on 21 Aug. The leader boards had the US at the numero uno position, while Great Britain ranked dois and China settled for três. Settled being a mild term. Chinese media have dubbed this Olympics as their worst flop. The closing ceremony was a grand affair, with great pomp and show and video presentations. One could witness Japanese PM Shinzo Abe dressed as Super Mario, in the spirit of the celebrations.
Towards the end of the ceremony, Rio handed over the torch to Tokyo, the host to the 2020 Olympics.
The Rio Olympics has seen it all: be it the doping issue, civilian protests, new world records, a team consisting of refugees. Cue in more drama, courtesy – the crowd booing the French pole vaulter, the Ryan Lochte scandal and of course, the green swimming pools.
We witnessed the dawn of new age stars, such as, Simone Biles, Katie Ledecky, Joseph Schooling and our very own Sakshi Malik and PV Sindhu.
And we said goodbye to Usain Bolt, the first Jamaican gold medalist, and the fastest man on earth. Also bid farewell to the most decorated Olympian of all times, US swimmer Michael Phelps.
Michael Phelps message to swimming enthusiasts
Michael Phelps in his final individual event was forced to be merry with a Silver medal, by his fan, 21-year old Joseph Schooling from Singapore, who clinched the gold. Phelps had given an emotionally-riveting interview. He said “I’m not happy, obviously, nobody likes to lose”. “But I’m proud of Joe. I wanted to change the sport of swimming,” he said. “With the people we have in the sport now I think you are seeing it.” He explained he wanted to teach kids “to believe in themselves, to not be afraid to know that the sky is the limit.” That’s the mark of great sportsmanship, and we wish Phelps success in all his future endeavors.
What’s happening back home
Erstwhile unknown, Sakshi Malik and PV Sindhu have become household names now. The governmental agencies and other institutions have finally woken up from their slumber and are now showering awards. If this interest and enthusiasm had been shown earlier, perhaps we would have seen more participants and more medals.
It is not really goodbye from Rio!
Next on cards is the 2016 Summer Paralympics, to be held from 07 to 18 Sep at Rio de Janeiro.
18 Indian athletes will be participating in the games. It is interesting to note that India’s Girisha N Gowda won a silver medal in the high jump event in the 2012 London Paralympics. There are estimates for 4-5 medals this time around.
So, there is more to see from Rio. Stay tuned!