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Top-five finish was always likely to be a (London) bridge too far

Now that that national day of mourning has been cancelled — thanks to Sally, Anna and co — it  remains to be seen what the ultimate consensus is in the London Olympics wash-up.

But, whatever Australia’s final medals haul, it surely has to be said that that lacklustre first week might just have been the sort of reality check we needed.

Not just in terms of swimming’s new world order but, given some of the outrageous pre-Games predictions, in terms of Australia’s true standing in the Olympics pecking order.

Thanks to the AOC’s spin doctors and assorted media hacks, I suspect that, going into the Games, some of us had been hoodwinked into believing Australia was primed for a top-five medal table finish.

But surely — reasonable pool success or not — the harsh reality was/is that while Australia will continue to demonstrate its ability to punch well above its weight, it will always struggle to match it with the real heavyweights (yes, now including the Brits) when it comes to the final medals standings.

Let’s face it. Despite what the hype merchants were saying, a top-five finish was always likely to be a (London) bridge too far.

Peter Thomson



2 Responses to Top-five finish was always likely to be a (London) bridge too far

  • New Zealanders had little reason for their schadenfreude in the first week of the Olympics.
    We should recall that for most of the time in most sports Australia is superior.
    It’s not that Australia has had a bad Olympic Games – it failed in its expectations in that first week.
    New Zealanders should have hush their whists until the end of the Games.
    That’s not to say the Australians will always fail.
    Australia is better than New Zealand at cricket, rugby league, netball (for the present), swimming, golf and has a better flying doctor service.
    New Zealand rarely has a day in the sun, many more under the mushroom, on which sits Australia.
    Phil Campbell, Rotorua, NZ.

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