Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Maybe Games

The Commonwealth Games has always been considered a poor cousin to more famous events like the Olympics and the World Cup but even with lowered expectations, nothing could prepare people for the nonsense that is the New Delhi Commonwealth Games.

The Commonwealth Games is held once every four years and brings together athletes from countries in the commonwealth. The Games is supposed to be held in New Delhi this year.

I said “supposed” because less than two weeks before the opening ceremony, construction for the Games village, main stadium, and practically everything else are still ongoing! This is turning out to be a major embarrassment for the Indian government as the Games were supposed to showcase the country as an up-and-coming country. So much for that idea!

Preparations are so bad that Commonwealth Games Federation president Michael Fennell had to publicly pressure the Indian government by calling a press conference and calling the athletes' village “unfinished.” He was being polite as some had already called the village "unlivable" as only 18 of 34 residential towers at the village are completed.

Just to twist the knife a little more, a footbridge under construction collapsed on Tuesday, injuring 23 construction workers. The footbridge was to lead pedestrians to the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium where the opening, closing ceremonies and athletics events are supposed to be held.

Again there is a “supposed” because the Games might not be held at all. An Australian discus-thrower had already pulled out of the Games due to security concerns and the New Zealand team manager is another person who has publicly said that the games may not go ahead. Guess we will all know in 2 weeks time if that is true.

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