The automatic entries for next month’s Olympics golf tournament are now set. Or, at least, those that have qualified by right rather than selection have been decided.
Nevertheless, I’ll be surprised if there aren’t a few last minute withdrawals when it is fully realised that ‘fings ain’t wot vey used to be’ in Olympic Sport. We’ve already seen the likes of Sergio Garcia, Dustin Johnson, Adam Scott and Tyrrell Hatton take their names off the list and I’m sure there will be more to come.
Going to Japan is tricky at any time and the logistics are trickier than usual due to the Covid restrictions. There’ll be no welcome from half (at least) of the Japanese population – if you happened to encounter any of them.
The opening and closing ceremonies, which are the highlights of the whole package if you ask me, will feature AI robots instead of emotional humans in the XXXII Olympiad.
There will be no mixing between the athletes and no first-hand experiences of Japan and, worse, no fraternising with other athletes in the Olympic Village; no watching of other events. Being locked up in your hotel while waiting for your turn to compete is no fun. Seriously, is that what the Olympic Games has come to? It’s very sad.
Unless I was crazily obsessed with owning a medal that I could use as a ball marker in future years why would I bother? It’s a busy time of the year with a lot going on for golfers. I’d give it the skip and, I won’t be watching it as an interested observer either because of the time difference and I need my regular sleep not to mention the wholesale (and appalling) PED cheating that seems to get worse as time goes by. Winning at all costs is now the norm. It’s a long way from the Olympic Spirit I once knew.
Then there’s the issue of a transgender athlete competing for New Zealand in the women’s weight-lifting. If this is considered a racist or sexist comment – so be it – it is not how it is intended. I cannot help the way I feel and was educated.
It brings this horrible thought to mind: how long before transgender athletes are competing in ladies golf? Who will have the ‘balls’ to stand up to that? It’s not as easy as it sounds, though. Not many men could live with the likes of the Korda sisters, Leona Maguire or Patty Tavatanakit on the golf course.