Thursday, August 11, 2016

A Conundrum of Olympian Standards

I could never understand this. How do Venus and Serena Williams and many champions of their status lose to people they would normally beat, at the Olympics? What happens to the champs? Are they not motivated enough? Or are the opponents more motivated than them?

The Olympics is about pride - little else. Tennis players have little to prove at the Olympics unlike someone like Usain Bolt for whom this is a grand stage to once again stamp his authority or Michael Phelps or others like that. Venus and Serena have conquered bigger stages and continute to do so against stronger oppositions. What happens at the Olympics warrants a study.

One remembers the passion that Leander Paes would play with when it came to playing for India, be it in the Davis Cup or at the Olympics. Does the same passion bite lesser known tennis players like the ones who have eliminated Venus and Serena (I am sure more big names have been elimiated but I can only remember these two). How come the number 1s are not picking up the golds here? Or even silvers or bronzes?

The easy answer would be to say that this is something they are too keen on. But champions like Venus and Serena do not hand over easy victories to anyone, anywhere. So is the other player playing better? Is there something in the preparation that does not suit the champs?

I'd love to see a study of amateur and professional players and how they performed at the Olympics. Remember that its not too long ago that pros were not allowed to participate in the Olympics. But they are pros and they should breeze through, which is not happening all the time.

An Olympian sized conundrum for me. 

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