Monday, January 7, 2008

When Athletes Blow a Gasket

Ricky Ponting was none too pleased when the media questioned a catch during the Sydney Test.

When asked during the post-match press-conference about whether he caught the ball cleanly, an incensed Ponting took offence to the question.

"I claimed the catch and there was no way I grounded it (the ball)."

"If you are questioning my integrity, then probably you shouldn't be sitting here," retorted a furious Australian captain.

Now, the interesting thing here is, I just saw an athlete lose his cool on the field yesterday. As I mentioned yesterday, I work for a small club in Brasil. Yesterday we were playing a friendly against some "Washington Generals" type team. We were winning 4-0, and most of the reserves entered the match.

Now, we have a player who left after last season, under rather bad terms. Fate, however, brought him back. He was released by the team he had left us for, was on his way to try to catch on to another team, when he ran in to a member management at a bus station. He was literally waiting on his bus to go to another team and try out. He was apologetic about the way he left the team, and was given a second chance.

So back to the game, 4 nil, and he's got a breakaway, wide open shot, he hits it terribly, right into the goalkeepers hands. At this point the crowd turns on him. Screams at him, calls him a traitor and that type of shot is the reason the other team released him. Typical stuff, nothing offensive at all. The kid (he is 19, btw) lost his head. He rips off his jersey, throws it on the ground, and walks off in tears. Never seen anything like it. I guess it is because sports is so "public" that athletes errors and shortcomings are so visible.

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