Sunday, August 05, 2012

Badders and Robin

This morning we were up bright and breezy to head to Wembley for the two men's bronze semi-finals - singles and doubles - which began at 9am. Amazing to read the paper on the way over there, documenting the crazy excitement of yesterday's six gold medals for GBR (we only got ONE in the entire of the 96 Games).

Wembley Arena was one of the venues used last time the Olympics was in London, in 1948, and they actually still have the old pool under the floorboards (one of the reasons people say the arena has poor acoustics for music shows). The weather on the way in was typically London summer...

This badminton serve challenge is a LOT harder than it looks - you get six shuttlecocks, so the maximum possible score is 60, but the record for the entire Games so far is just 34 points. I was pretty pleased to get 6 points. My pal Nick (pictured) and plenty of others got the big zero. 

In the first match we saw, the Chinese guy beat the South Korean guy to win the men's singles bronze in a long three setter. It was great to see how chuffed the Chinese fella was. You'd sort of imagine that with them winning so many golds, bronze wouldn't mean that much. But he was properly delighted when he won.

And then it was the doubles, which was Malaysia vs South Korea. Malaysia haven't won any medals in these Games yet, so as underdogs had most of the crowd rooting for them, with these guys doing a good job of cheer leading.

Sadly, though, it wasn't to be, as the Malaysian pair blew a big lead in the first set and then quickly lost the second. Another great session, though. It's just such an incredible opportunity to see great sport played by some of its absolute finest players. 

My first double header tomorrow - water polo in the morning, volleyball in the evening.