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Topend Sports Newsletter: 22 July 2016

 
["Topend Sports"]
 
Is the World's Greatest Athlete at the Olympics?
Every four years, at the Olympic Games we see the greatest athletes on the biggest sporting stage. Or do we?
 
There are many athletes not appearing at this event for different reasons. The odds for the Russian team being in Rio are very low, a team predicted to win over 20 gold medals. Other great athletes may have failed to peak at the right time or are injured at this one time in the four year cycle. There are also many great athletes who are not there because their sport or events are not represented. The world's most popular sport (football) has mostly under 23 year old players, and another very popular sport (cricket) is not represented at all. Even the recently reinstated sport of golf has been shocked by many of the top names deciding not to attend.
 
Of course there will still be many great athletes at the Olympics. Michael Phelps, possibly the greatest Olympian ever, may add to his record gold medal haul. However, he would not excel in sports out of the water. Similarly, Usain Bolt is the "world's fastest man", but only in races over a short distance. Put him in a 1500m race and he will be considered slow. Just yesterday sport scientist Ross Tucker threw up an interesting poll on twitter asking the hypothetical question about how fast would Usain Bolt run a mile. 
 
My view was that he would take more than five minutes to run a mile, the leading response, as he does not have the metabolism to continue running at speed for that long, and by half way he would be quickly fading. 
 
Fitness for sporting events require very specific physical attributes and conditioning, and someone who excels in a range of attributes is rare. That is why I believe the greatest athlete is one with all round ability, and the best track and field event which showcases this is the decathlon, an event which does not get as much public interest and recognition as it should.
 
I agree with the Swedish King Gustav V, who said to Jim Thorpe after he won the decathlon at the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm.
 
"You, sir, are the World's Greatest Athlete" 
 
 
Greatest Athlete Content
‚ÄčThere is a large range of information on Topend Sports about the world's greatest athletes, here is just a sample.
 
Recently Added Content To Topend Sports
 
‚ÄčThere is always something new on Topend Sports, here is just a sample of the latest articles that you may have missed.
 
 
Thanks for reading. If you have a comment to make or a suggestion about what to include in the next newsletter please let me know by replying to this email or via social media (see links below). Rob (about me)

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