Stop Press Update
Your intrepid reporter has spent many hours discussing views about the issue of the Ladies World Champion with many other countries. Everyone understands that the two ladies involved are innocent from this catastrophe, however not everyone is taking the news well!
I can see the desire to correct the situation, and understand peoples anxiety, but we must consider the competitors at the center of this row, and its complexities. I have for many years been friends of trampolinist's all over the world and the one thing that has stuck me over this time is the sportsman like behavior that is standard in our sport. Countries are rightly proud of their performances whatever the level and Russia and Germany are no different. We are not football, and we do not see the tennis tantrums that have become standard TV for the world. My knowledge of Irena Karavaeva is that she is a magnificent performer, proud and majestic, but also acceptant of the fate the judges deliver. I have never witnessed her display in competition anything but calm confidence (inside is a different story). My knowledge of the Russian officials is also impressive, they support, even expect from their performers, but also believe in the competitive system. Indeed they beckon the world to take them on and if they lose, look out next time!
I do not believe that either Irena herself or the Russian Federation will leave this situation uncorrected, however they are not a nation to be bullied. I have heard many suggestions of putting pressure on them, this I believe is a mistake. The response from most people to an attack is defense, and the Russian trampoline family are unlikely to be different (remember these are all innocent and placed in the position by others). I would hate to see this approach, it always leads to broken friendships and bitter conflict, and is not the way of the modern world. I am stunned to find I am one of only a handful who have discussed the issue with the Russians themselves!
I remember a similar event in 1992 in Auckland New Zealand, the French pair, proudly returned to the arena and put their medals on the real winners themselves. The sport was stronger from that display and the crowd took the French pair to their hearts! How about we give the people involved a chance to respond? I believe wholeheartedly that given the chance the two performers themselves will reach an agreement, after all they are old team mates! Lets just take time to sit back and watch the story unfold, given space I believe it will make us stronger and proud of the result.
Over too you FIG?