Outside of the Olympic period, you rarely see swimming, gymnastics, and track & field televised, and there are no stadiums full of spectators at these sports every week. The reality is that they are not that interesting to watch – except at the time of the Olympics it seems. It is football (whatever code), basketball, baseball, cricket and many other sports that are more popular with the fans week in and week out. At Olympic time, unfortunately, it is not just the sports fans that are watching, so the most entertaining sports are not necessarily the most watched and getting the most attention.
What is with all the Australian swimmers coming back from retirement? First, it was butterfly swimmer Geoff Huegill, who made a successful comeback to the Commonwealth Games, including shedding a huge amount of post-competitive weight, then announced he would continue until the 2012 London Olympics.
More recently, Ian Thorpe told us he has been secretly training for three months, losing a bit of weight too no doubt and is back on track for the Olympics too. Not to be left behind, ex-teammate Michael Klim has also announced he is coming back from retirement. Can’t these guys make up their mind? I always thought that retirement is just that, let yourself go and enjoy just being a spectator. Of course, the desire to be out there competing may still be there, but usually, the body has made the decision for you.
Come on, move over and let the next batch of swimmers do their thing. They are not going to be satisfied with anything less than what they achieved in their previous career, and they are only setting themselves up for embarrassment. Well, at least that will be entertaining.