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What a shuttlecock-up

By October 14, 2009News

badmintonWell, it was clearly only a matter of time before cracks started appearing in the organisation of the 2012 Olympics and people started grumbling.

Bozza and Tessa Jowell want the badminton and the rhythmic gymnastics to be held in Wembley Arena.  They were supposed to be held in a temporary £20m venue in Greenwich but in a money saving exercise the Mayor and Olympics Minister want them shifted to the Arena.  They now have to persuade the gymnastics and badminton world federations to choose Wembley Arena.

Badminton England, however, are in a huff about this and don’t want to play at Wembley. Its chief executive Adrian Christy said playing at Wembley would damage competitors performances due to the travelling time required from the athletes’ village in Stratford, east London. (A good point, but won’t that affect every individual competitor equally and so ultimately not affect the outcome of the medals?)

My favourite quote though came from Denis Oswald, chairman of the International Olympic Committee commission that monitor’s London’s progress. He said, rather understatedly in my opinion, “I have to express a concern that three years before the Games the venue has not been finalised.”

Now that is a good point. With the greatest sporting spectacle in the world heading to London in under three years, the fact that we haven’t actually decided where we’ll play the badminton IS A BIT OF A PROBLEM. Considering the rhythmic gymnastic involves a lot of twelve year old girls wafting tassels about in a manner more suited to High School Musical than the Olympics, I’m not bothered if you hold that in Wembley Arena or a drive-thru Burger King. (I know, it is a very technical event and deserves its place amongst the world’s elite sports, before we get any complaints from the parents of talented hoop-wrigglers.)

We’d really prefer our Olympics to go well.  Please sort it out, folks.  Ta.

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