Saturday, August 11, 2012

For the Love of Badminton!

Every Olympic Gamesis known for something. Previous games have been known for performance enhancing drug use, terrorist attacks, and even losing the keys to Olympic venues.
The London Olympics stand out because of a scandal in the highly competitive, engrossing, sport of badminton.
Three teams from Singapore, Indonesia, and China were dismissed from the Olympic Games for intentionally trying to lose their pool matches, in order to get easier matches in the next round of the tournament.
In the China case, losing would’ve separated their two teams, giving them an opportunity to win two medals instead of one.
I put this on the blog because it is an open question whether a government could condone such behavior.
There is unquestioned prestige in the winning of an Olympic gold medal.
For the athletes, there’s the added perk of fame and notoriety, particularly in some of these Southeast Asian countries. There have certainly been allegations of athletes in Communist countries doing everything to get ahead.
But isn’t the prospect of being caught, a far greater embarrassment than any potential gain?

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