My National

My National

The fans are the real champions

  |  August 9, 2012

The crowd watches Usain Bolt prepare for his 200m semi-final at London 2012. Pic: Stu Forster/Getty Images
The crowd watches Usain Bolt prepare for his 200m semi-final at London 2012.  Pic: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Olympic crowds are so good. You wonder why all that money was spent on security for London 2012.They could have saved those funds and left it to all these well-meaning fans to sort it out for themselves.

When an inebriated spectator threw a bottle on to the tracks as runners were in the blocks ahead of the 100 metres final, he received a smack from a Dutch women who had won a medal in judo. And everyone thought this was jolly good.

Seb Coe called it civil “poetic justice”. While the London 2012 overlord Coe cautioned against vigilantism, he did not seem to mind if the miscreant was subjected to a judiciously executed citizen’s ippon.

If Bradley Wiggins, the gold medal winning Tour de France champion, had been passing sentence, you know what he would have done. He would have sentenced the man to the same thing as the reprobates who threw tacks on the road during the Tour. “Round them up and send them to a football match,” Wiggins said back then.

The people attending these Games have a keen grasp of sportsmanship. Sarah Attar, Saudi Arabia’s first female athlete, was given a standing ovation when she finished more than 40 seconds behind the winner of her 800 metres heat yesterday. It was the embodiment of the Olympic ideal, and it was celebrated like a gold medal run.