Anorak News | When the Going Gets Tough

When the Going Gets Tough

by | 17th, February 2004

‘IF you’ve heard Sven Goran Eriksson say he has no plans to vacate his post as England’s manager before his contract expires in 2006 once you’ve heard him say it a million times.

‘Could you repeat the question?’

But still the rumours of his premature departure will not abate and today the Mirror hears David Beckham say how the England squad would be “devastated” if the Swede quit.

“He keeps coming out and saying he wants to stay but it will keep coming until he has signed a 10-year contract,” says the England skipper of this Viking saga.

Truth is that non-one might want the affable Swede to stay on if his England team perform badly at this summer’s Euro 2004 tournament.

Sport moves quickly and today’s hero is tomorrow’s failure.

Take the Mail’s story on Marion Jones, the Olympic sprinter who was once the toast of the athletics track.

Though still a star, Jones has been forced to deny that she has ever taken banned performance–enhancing substances and explain why she was once involved with Charlie Francis, who coached the disgraced Ben Johnson.

“When we were with Mr Francis,” says Jones, “there were athletes whose names you would know who were consulting him. So if our rivals were doing it, if not openly, I always thought: ‘Why shouldn’t we?’”

The answer to Jones’ question is that if the sport of athletics is to retain even a shred of credibility it should shun they who cheat. This is big business and with the allure of riches and fame comes the temptation to cheat.

Associating your good name with a man who has been banned for life from Canadian athletics sullies a once noble sport.

But sport still possesses the ability to inspire, and we read with interest the Independent’s report on John Daly, whose “Grip it and rip it” philosophy to golf typifies his approach to life.

News is that after nine years of trying, the bulky American won the Buick Invitational, his first victory on the USPGA Tour since winning the Open at St Andrews in 1995.

The four-times married star called his win “the greatest” and attributes his success to self-belief and hard work – and the pack of cigarettes he smoked on the back nine on Saturday.’

Posted: 17th, February 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink