WHATWE WERE SAY­ING YEARSAGO

(in Au­gust 1997)

Inside Sport - - AS WE WERE -

The Olympic 100 has al­ways been the race to de­ter­mine the world’s fastest man – un­til 1996, when a Cana­dian took it and Amer­i­can re­porters anointed the next clos­est ath­lete, the win­ner of the 200 and 400 me­tres, Michael John­son. Their jus­ti­fi­ca­tion came down to what seemed like sim­ple maths: since John­son won the 200 me­tres in 19.32 sec­onds, he ran the equiv­a­lent of two 100s at 9.66 each. That cer­tainly sounds faster than Dono­van Bai­ley’s 9.84. “I don’t need some sci­en­tist to tell me,” said John­son’s coach, Clyde Hart. “I can add and sub­tract.” Thus was born the dif­fer­ence: a 150m match would de­cide the fastest man on Earth ... But the 150m “sprint to the mint” was not about sci­ence. In­creas­ingly, it grew into some­thing al­most as ex­cit­ing: a grudge match. Some­where be­tween At­lanta and Toronto, the two great­est sprint­ers in the world be­gan to de­spise each other. The Fastest Man on Earth (Yes, He Is) by David Tracey

The el­e­va­tion of Chris An­stey into the NBA ranks as the num­ber-18 pick in the dra— sug­gests a wa­ter­shed for Aus­tralian bas­ket­ball. With all the soul-search­ing go­ing in the game at present, in light of the per­ceived de­cline in pub­lic in­ter­est in the NBL, here was fur­ther ev­i­dence that the game is in as healthy a state as it’s ever been ... the NBA is ba­si­cally a weekly world cham­pi­onship like few other sports on the planet. Get used to the dis­ap­pear­ance of our emerg­ing young guns, as soc­cer has for years now. Win­ner & Losers For two weeks in June, fat blokes were crazy, sexy, cool. Even stranger, they were ath­letic, ex­otic and tele­genic. When Grand Sumo came to Aus­tralia, rik­ishi (pro­fes­sional sumo com­peti­tors) were treated like vis­it­ing movie stars, even though hardly any­one had heard of them or knew how to pro­nounce their names. A puz­zled Musashimar­u played “Where’s the Sumo?” on

Hey, Hey It’s Satur­day and threw a fully clothed Blocker Roach into a swim­ming pool on The Footy Show. Siz­ing Up Sumo by Mark Dapin

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