Let the Games begin. Please…

The Olympics opening ceremony. An opportunity for the host city to showcase those things that set it apart. So Rio’s extravaganza will feature Gisele Bundchen getting mugged. At least that’s the story that emerged from people who saw a dress rehearsal and were asked to keep quiet about it and didn’t. In that version of…

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Don’t mess with Mr Bigglesworth

Rio’s Olympic organisers thought they’d seen the worst that circumstances could throw at them. Then they came face to face with Kitty Chiller. Australia’s chef de mission bears a passing resemblance to Mr Bigglesworth, Dr Evil’s cryogenically frozen cat of Austin Powers fame. And can be just as scary if suitably provoked. Which she was…

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You’re not in the same league, Eddie

The big question for me this week has been: is there a bigger plonker on the planet than Eddie McGuire? Turns out there is. Meet ESPN sports commentator Stephen A. Smith, a bloke who makes Eddie, with his let’s-drown-a-female-journo-like-it’s-Salem-in-the-1600s, look like a feminist. When NFL star Ray Rice knocked out his partner in an Atlanta…

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Long jumper freezes out the Zika threat

You’re an Olympic champion keen to defend your title. But you’re worried the Zika virus might harm your future procreation plans. What do you do? You freeze your sperm, of course. While Zika has prompted a number of athletes to pull the pin on Rio altogether, 2012 Olympic long jump champion Greg Rutherford has discovered…

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Trump tries sports diplomacy. Fails.

Donald Trump tried to be nice to someone this week. It went spectacularly wrong. Trying to thank Colin Montgomerie for playing at one of his golf courses, Trump unwittingly trolled the Scottish golfer. @montgomeriefdn Colin, great to have you at Trump Turnberry. So proud of you and your GREAT playing! You made winning MAJORS look…

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Can things get any worse for Rio?

Brazil’s economy is tanking more than Bernie Tomic, the country’s infested with Zika-bearing mozzies, the water’s putrid and a stack of Olympics-related construction won’t make the deadline. Now, less than three months out, Brazil has just lost its president to a corruption scandal, with Dilma Rousseff suspended while she faces trial for creative budget accounting….

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Bloopers aplenty in Olympic countdown

It’s been all about the countdown this week as we notched up 100 days to the Olympics on Wednesday. Michelle Obama celebrated by getting in some fencing practice with the US team, which looked more like an audition for the next Star Wars movie. The force is strong in this one. The Independent newspaper marked…

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If I was Chris Gayle’s missus

There are celebrity kids out there called Apple, Blanket, Pilot Inspektor, Audio Science, Princess Tiaamii (not an actual princess), Zuma Nesta Rock and Diva Thin Muffin Pigeen. The names are a scandal. But at least they’re not derived from an actual scandal involving one of their parents. Enter Chris Gayle, groundbreaker in all the wrong…

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Abbott’s hardline surfing policy

You’re 17 years old. You’re surfing at Noosa Heads. It’s Easter. The last thing on your mind is politics. And then some dude drops in on your wave, the cardinal sin of surfing. He’s wet-suited like a seal, also marginal behaviour in these balmy Autumn waters. It’s your former Prime Minister, Tony Abbott. While she…

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Does Russian sport have a reading problem?

“What should Russian athletes do?” asked Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko. “Dance on the table? Sing a song?” Mutko was pondering aloud what Russia has to do to gain admission to the Olympic track and field competition after the world athletics body extended its ban over last year’s doping scandal. With Russia’s 2012 Eurovision entry…

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Matildas sound the perfect Peter Allen tribute

If Peter Allen’s hit song I Go To Rio doesn’t make it back into the Top 40 this week, I’ll eat my maracas. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the celebrated ditty from the bloke who, no matter how far or how wide he roamed, still called Australia home. I’ve been thinking of a…

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Rio, we have a problem

First up, this week’s roll call of disaster from Rio de Janiero. With Olympics tickets selling slower than a Sunday driver, Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes has told spectators not to bother buying tickets to the rowing. “Do not spend your money on this,” he says. “Go watch at the border of the lagoon, drinking your…

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