There's only 23 or so days left until the 2008 Olympics open stall. Vincent Hogan had a very good article in yesterdays Irish Independent stating the plain and unfortunate facts that we probably won't win anything at the games. He goes on to say that there will be an uproar for about a week afterwards as we complain about the tax money spent and the poor performances but what I want to know is will we even do that?
At the last Olympics Ireland finished bottom of the table with no medals after that whole horse affair. This meant that we finished below Mongolia who won a silver medal, I'm not sure what in. The point is that from the 1920s to the late 90s it had been illegal in Mongolia to have a surname. However the dropping of the ban was ignored until identification cards were introduced in 2004.I know surnames have nothing to do with Olympic titles but for all our economic success (at the time), for all the money John O'Donoughe (at the time) was putting into sports, with all the 'centres of excellence' that have been set up you'd think we would have been able to manage at least one medal if a nation with the economic background of Mongolia could manage one.
Has Ireland lost its drive to present itself on the world stage as a great sporting nation, or indeed, did we ever have that drive in the first place? Are we content to listen to the drivel that John Tracey comes out with, that we are a small nation of untalented inbreeds, destroyed by famine and civil war and sure isn't a wonder we can even qualify to the Olympics? Second last place finishes are our gold medals. Is Ireland at the Olympics turning into Ireland at the Eurovision?