Tuesday, August 19, 2008

"Medals table, meet Ireland. Ireland, the medals table"

Like buses, you wait ages for one and then two come along together.

Our sprinter, Paul Hession, finished fifth in his semi-finals but only four went forward. Doesn't look like a medal is going to come from the track this year. A few more athletes still have to toe the line so we'll have to wait and see. Fingers crossed that Alistar Cragg can make the finals of the 5000m. His heat's tomorrow afternoon, my time.

But inside the boxing ring is a different story. Two boxers, Paddy Barnes and Kenny Egan, have guaranteed themselves bronze medals, minimum, by both winning their respective quarter final fights. Egan was never challenged in the fight, coming out a 10-0 victor. Barnes looked safe from the half way stage and just had to keep his opponent at bay to win the fight. There'll be great expectations of Darren Sutherland tomorrow now as the last of our boxers takes the ring in another quarter final.

Every year around Wimbledon time you see kids take to the street with tennis racquets, summer the GAA shirts are all you can see, all winter long its football, and more so in the UK you see cricket in the summer amongst youngsters. The sport that gets the most media attention is what you'll see the kids play. Now? I think after this you'll see plenty of kids signing up for boxing. I know sixteen years ago, when Ireland won a gold and a silver at the Barcelona Olympics, a younger version of myself took the first steps into a boxing ring. Six years back I turned from boxing to running. Maybe I should have stuck it out... Ahhhh who am I kidding? I was pish poor at boxing! At least this way I've still got my looks... and my nose has character!
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