The thirtieth Olympics of modern times transformed London into a playground from July 27th to August 12th 2012. Of the 259 participating countries, 91 nations could boast of at least a bronze medal achieved.
While other nations proudly recount their Olympic experience, the team from
Cameroon would rather it never took part in the competition.
History was made; legends emerged, world and Olympic records beaten,
masters reigned and new talents born.
Amazingly, team Cameroon did not fall on the right side of history. It is still to be understood how; thirty three athletes participating in eight sporting competitions could not win a bronze medal at the Olympics. As other athletes grimed to medal positions, Cameroonian athletes schemed their ways to defection. Swimmer; Edingue Ekane, weight lifting man; Frederic Fokedjou, football lady; Drusille Ngako and five boxers saw the Olympics as an opportunity to make it for greener pastures. It is clear that, participating in sporting competitions is the essential. Winning is just an additional inspiration.
Only Ali Laure Annabel of wrestling, Thomas Essomba of 49kg boxing and Sarah Hamffou Nana of table tennis could make it to the quarter-final stage of their respective competitions. Flag bearer, Ali Laure Annabel was beaten: (3-0) in a bronze medal match by Marzalyuk Vasilia of Belerus in the 68kg wrestling.
The lessons are clear; an Olympic competition is prepared in four years not in few months. Athletes need infrastructure, competition, motivation, and status: so as to provide results and avoid “talent drain”.
Rio is in four years not 400 years. Commissions and meetings do not win medals. Do not expect to win medals against people who have worked hard for so long and are objective.
Team Cameroon’s fiasco did not steal the show of the London 2012games. American swimmer, Michael Phelps and Jamaican sprinter, Usain Bolt are the two sensations of the games.
Phelps became the greatest ever Olympian winning six medal; four gold.Michael Phelps retired from competitive swimming with an Olympic record of twenty-two individual Olympic medals; nineteen gold. Being the all time best Olympic performance by a single athlete. Usain Bolt became the first sprinter to win the 100m and 200m events in back-to-back Olympics.
The Jamaicans reigned in male sprinting breaking the world record of the 4by100m relay event in 36, 87 seconds. While the United States ladies were sprint queens breaking the thirty year old 4by100m relay event in 40, 36seconds(WR). Mohammed Farah of Somali descend, won the 5000m and10000m events for Great Britain.
While the U.S.A stamped their supremacy in female football, it was never to happen for Brazil in male soccer as they were edged two goals to one by Mexico in the gold medal match.
Africa recorded 34 medals; 11gold, way below the 40 medals; 13gold of Beijing 2008. African sensations came in athletics as: David Rudisha of Kenya smashing the 800m world record (1:40.91second) to win gold. Meseret Defar and Tiranesh Dibaba of Ethiopia won the 5000m and 10000m female events respectively. Taouflik Makhloufi won gold in the 1500m
race for Algeria. Stephen Kiprotich winning the Olympic marathon for Uganda was promoted from prison warder to assistant senior warder by President Yuweri Musevini. Oscar Pisterius (Blade Runner) of South Africa became the first handicapped athlete to compete against able-bodied athletes.
Fellow South Africans: Chad Le Clos and Cameron Vander Burgh grabbed gold in the 200m butterfly and 100m breast stroke respectively. Anthony Obame, 24, earned Gabon its first Olympic medal,winning silver in 89kg taekwondo competition.
The London Olympics is said to be the all time best games in terms of organization, so far. The United States of America dominated the medal counts with 104 medals: 46 gold, 29 silver and 29 bronze. China ranks second with 87 medal: 38 gold and host Great Britain, third; 62 medals: 28gold. South Africa and Ethiopia were among the first 25 nations on the medal table, occupying the 24th and 25th positions. In global, 931medal were up for grabs. 283 gold, 291 silver and 345
259 countries participated with 91 winning at least a bronze
medal. Cyprus, Montenegro and Gabon won their first Olympic medals. After 16 days of Olympic fiesta, Boris Johnson, mayor of London handed over the Olympic flag to the mayor of Rio De Janeiro. Hoping lessons have been learned and will be implemented in the next four years. The Olympic torch is off but lights in our hearts.