A Decade Of Robbery & Redemption For Mary T

Photo: Mary T Meagher and the poster that would have to wait four more years until Los Angeles 1984

Seoul ’88 special, 25 years on: After a decade of dominating on butterfly events like we’d never seen before, Meagher made the podium once more at the 1988 Games as she bid farewell to a glorious career, one also defined by robbery and redemption

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Seoul ’88 special, 25 years on: After a decade of dominating on butterfly events like we’d never seen before, Meagher made the podium once more at the 1988 Games as she bid farewell to a glorious career, one also defined by robbery and redemption

Comments

Clive Rushton

The boycott in 1980 was a travesty of the use of power by all the countries who succumbed to gaining easy political points which had no effect whatsoever on the cause of the issue (The invasion of Afghanistan by the USSR). Jimmy Carter may have settled himself into a respected role as a world facilitator of peace and harmony but his actions in 1980 were despicable.

Likewise Margaret Thatcher in the UK, when she wrote to Sir Dennis Follows (Chairman of the British Olympic Association) virtually commanding him to boycott the Games. To his eternal credit his response was, “Prime Minister, we will go.”

I have also seen a letter from the then acting New Zealand PM to one of the Kiwi Olympic sports where the strength of language as well as the political and patriotic blackmail is shocking to read.

These politicians had no grasp of the positive benefits of continuing their Olympic campaigns, nor of the devastatingly negative effects on two generations of athletes – the ones who were directly affected by the boycott and the next generation, four years on, who trained in the midst of some uncertainty that their year-upon-year efforts may be obliterated on the whim of some self-serving politician who had no comprehension of sport or Olympianism.

Good on Mary T for setting the bar so high and for continuing her quest until she decided it was enough, not some politician. If you study underwater shots of her hand orientation and pull pathway on fly it is a joy to behold and could still serve as a model for all good flyers to this day.

Bill Bell

“I wish you’d STOP callin’ me Jim-uh.

“My name’s NOT Jim-uh.”

Lane Four

I remember being at the 1980 Olympic Trials in Irvine. There was a feeling of “Why are we here?” amongst the swimmers. Sure, there were bribes of trips to China and Hawaii, but no one really cared. And then Ronald Reagan showed up at Trials with his entourage. What a joke. Once again the athletes were being used. First by Carter and then by Reagan for votes. To this day I can’t read any articles about Moscow. Sure, I went onto Youtube to watch the races so that I could finally SEE the pool. My point is I hope this never happens again. Athletes like Sippy Woodhead….Craig Beardsley….Kim Linehan…..missed their chance for Olympic gold at the absolute peak of their careers. Thinking about 1980 does nothing but make me sick. But thank you for a wonderful story on T.

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