We Australians love our sport, whether as participants, or as spectators.
Swimming, cricket, football ,tennis, hockey, horseracing, it does not matter, we love it all. But has there become too much emphasis on winning, rather than sportsmanship and how the game is played?
Is the fact that you kick more accurately, punch more strongly, swim faster, or hit a ball harder, really justification for earning millions of dollars?
Are professional athletes overpaid? Has the financial gain become more important than the glory of playing for your team, town, city or country?
Is the money more important than sportsmanship, and if so, is this the reason for cheating? Because that is what taking performance- enhancing drugs really means :-CHEATING.
There was once a time in Australia, perhaps a simpler, gentler period in our short history, when we played for the sheer joy and fun of playing. A win was considered a bonus.
Nowadays sport and sport sponsorship is big business, there is so much money involved.
In a recent proposal instigated by John Coates the AOC president, potential Olympians could find themselves going to jail if they do not adhere to the agreed terms of the statutory declaration they will be required to sign. This includes team coaches and officials, as well as athletes.
Under New South Wales legislation ( if Coates recommendation is accepted ) any team member who signs the document, and is subsequently found to have taken, or been involved in the use of banned substances, could face court, possible hefty fines, and even jail time.
Following the recent turmoil in the cycling world, specifically the Lance Armstrong scandal and flow-on within the Australian cycling hierarchy, a major sponsor of the sport is suing UCI, the world cycling body. This company claims that its image has been tarnished by their association with cycling, and the lack of the governing body’s control of the drug cheats in the sport.
An athlete cannot run with money in his pockets. He must run with hope in his heart, and dreams in his head
Czech long distance runner. Winner 3 gold medals 1952 Summer Olympics.