Article on the chase for the top 8 countries to get 3 male starters in the Beijing Games:
And then there were? Bill Davoren gives us the score
Tuesday, 27 May 2008
Bill Davoren is a man with plenty on his mind. Last weekend was a disastrous one for the Australian Olympic Triathlon Team. Good results for both Russian and U.S teams mean that the strength of the Australian team could be compromised. We caught up with Triathlon Australia's High Performance Director waiting for his flight out of Madrid, one he was probably happy to take. We get the inside word on what happened in Madrid, how the team now shapes up, Brad Kahlefeldt's injury and the up and coming world titles in Vancouver.
There have been all sorts of rumours about what happened in Madrid. What's the real story?
Firstly let me tell you that Sexton crashed. I'm not sure if people realise that, but he crashed on the first lap. Conditions in Europe have been horrendous for the last month. If I'd said to you that Madrid was going to be a wetsuit swim and freezing cold and 30 guys are going to DNF (did not finish) with borderline hypothermia, you would've laughed. So we've had some freak conditions.
Brendan's (Sexton) crash on the first lap came after rain had brought all this gravel onto the course and basically his wheel slipped out from in front of him. He landed pretty heavily and there was just no way he could continue. And they are the facts. Did we foresee that? No, you can't plan for that. That's the reality of the game.
As that scenario unfolded and you realised that the U.S and Russia had overtaken Australia on the points table, possibly limiting our men's field to 2, did you contact Greg Bennett?
I haven't spoken to Greg at this stage. I received an email this morning and I'll talk to him when I get to Vancouver in the next 24 hours. The bottom line is the game is still alive. It's alive until the end of the world Championships in Vancouver in two weeks time.
The fact that we're 9th (only the top 8 can field 3 athletes at the games) means we still have one last shot to rectify that. Even if Brendan had scored points, and we anticipated that he would've scored some, the game would still be alive in Vancouver, that's how tight it is. We've known for 18 months that it was going to be touch and go all the way.
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