Has BBC 5 live completely lost the plot?

We listened to 5 Live all day yesterday as their presenters time and time and time again vented their spleen at the LOCOG for the empty seats that were evident at a number of Olympic events.  Five Live has been on  amission for months to undermine the event and despite an explanation, a very clear one, that the empty seats were those of the “Olympic Family” ie athletes and officials who are mostly in training at this early stage of the event and therefore unable to attend events.  Despite this they attempted to whip their listeners up into a frenzy of dissent.

This typifies the bad side of Britishness, amidst everything that is wonderful about these games we have an innate need to find fault.  I’m sick of it.  Aren’t you?

Later in the day it appeared the tide had turned against them and they turned 180 degrees into arse licking support.  Presumably the tweets and emails of listeners like me eventually wore them down.

Beth Tweddle. Back of the net. Back of the bloody net.

Could you do that?  No.  Could David Beckham?  no.  Could Beth Tweddle earn a percentage point of his income?  No.

Could you do that? No. Could David Beckham? No. Could Beth Tweddle earn a percentage point of his income? No. Is life just?

I totally agreed with Robert Kitson’s column in The Guardian today that lamented the relative prominence of news stories on Monday; reflecting on the weekend’s sporting achievements.

Like many, I was enthralled by Jenson Button’s critic-bashing performance.  Sublime, determined and gutsy.

Well done mate.  You showed the sneering hacks.


It wasn’t a bloody patch on Beth Tweddle’s.

My youngest daughter knocked her pan in for a number of years as a member of our nearest gymnastics club (10 miles away as it happens).  She grew muscles that put me to shame.  She was fit as a butcher’s dog.  She had extraordinary strength AND flexibility and yet she was at the bottom of the gymnastics ladder.

Gymnastics is for superheroes and you better believe it.

And Britain (as Kitson rightly points out) is football’s equivalent of the Isle of Man (reserves) on the world gymnastics stage.

So, the fact that Tweddle crashed and burned in her top apparatus (the asymetric bars) where she had previously gained our ONLY EVER world gold, yet picked herself up to qualify for the floor final was a feat of incredulity in itself.

But that wasn’t the end.

She won it.

Yes.  She won it.

Unlike Andy Murray.

Unlike any British golfer in the sport we taught the world, in a major, in ten years.

Unlike England’s football team since 1966.

Unlike all of our highest paid sports, ahem, personalities in most of their disciplines.

But Beth did.

We voted for Beth to win Sports Personality of the Year the last time she won gold.  Fat chance.

This time, she didn’t even hit the bloody headlines. That achievement should have been front page news.  Not in the sports sections – in the main papers.

It’s a bloody crying shame.

Beth Tweddle.  We, the Gormans, salute you…

Nancy Langat
August 23, 2008, 4:18 pm
Filed under: bieijing olympics, olympics, Rants, sports, stories | Tags: , , ,

Kenya's Nancy Longat winning 1500m.

Kenya's Nancy Longat winning 1500m gold at Beijing.

Kenya’s Nancy Langat won the Gold in the 1500m this afternoon. But you’d be forgiven for not noticing it as Brendan Foster wittered on in True BBC biasedness about fourth placed Lisa Dobriskey.

Is it just me or Brendan Foster past his sell by date?

God we can be tedious bastards, us Brits. But we’re quick to criticise the Americans for it.

Anyway, because Brendan did not properly acknowledge your victory Nancy, I will.

Well done Nancy Langat.

Michael Johnson has a wee laugh to himself

Usain Bolt once again bolted up, this time in the 200m final, becoming the only man ever to set world records in the 100 and 200m Olympic finals in the same year.  He destroyed the field again.  What an incredible pair of performances.

In doing so he robbed Michael Johnson of his 200m World Record and Johnson responded, when asked by Sue Barker on the BBC tonight how he thought Bolt compared to Phelps (if one can even make a genuine comparison ) by saying, and I kid you not that (and I paraphrase) “Bolt had a far greater impact because Phelps never ‘rewrote’ anything.”

Och man.  Have a word with yourself

He won eight gold medals, more than any other human being EVER.  To add to his six from the last Olympics.  That’s 14 Gold medals.  What’s more he broke six world records.

Now, I’m not comparing the two but to say Phelps never rewrote anything smacks of a collosal ego.

What the subscript says is this.

“Bolt is great because he beat MY long standing world record.”


Hoy you lot.

The rest of the world must be rubbing its eyes in disbelief as Hoy and co have put the Great back into Great Britain.  These Olympics have been startling.

Excuse me.  Is this table upside down?

Excuse me. Is this table upside down?

Hoy is now a national hero (frankly he was anyway) and Scotland can take its place at the top table with pride.  (Scotland on its own would be well inside the top 20.)

Well Done Chris and everyone else.  You have made Britishness desireable once again.

Putting the Great into Great Britain.

Putting the Great into Great Britain.

In the middle of it all

Ooh, the sound of the thwack of leather on willow.

Ooh, the sound of the thwack of leather on willow.

Life just now is like some sort of sporting nirvana. Yet, instead of being able to sprawl about, beached whale-like on the sofa at home watching the Olympics I have the tantalising proposition of a lifetime sporting ambition ahead of me.

Tomorrow I go to the first ever Scotland v England cricket match.

Now. That should be fun.

The weather forecast?

rain, rain stay away.

rain, rain stay away.

Not good

God given talent – Phelps
August 17, 2008, 10:06 pm
Filed under: bieijing olympics, life, olympics, Rants, sports, stories | Tags: ,

Who ate all the pies?

Who ate all the pies?

I have to say I think some of the “He’s not that good, swimmers can swim 100 metres front, back and sideways and win a medal.” is total bollocks.  If that was the case Mark Spitz would have won more than seven golds in his career, so too would Matt Biondi, Ian Thorpe – The Thorpedo, and how about Shane Gould?

The fact is they all fell so far short of Michael Phelps’ mark as to render the best swimming Olympian argument  redundant.  So, then one has to move on to other sports to dis the ‘best’ argument.

Steven Redgrave’s five rowing golds in succesive Olympics is nothing short of miraculous and I think that makes him a contender.

Carl Lewis’ multi disciplinary and multi-Olympics’ success does too.

But stand back a second and look at what this remarkable man has done and you have to say…

You’re the man.

By the way, he ain’t finished yet.  14 golds and counting.