A Californian surfer was among the more unlikely athletes being sworn into Syria’s team at the Olympic Village today. Swimmer Azad Al-Barazi is more accustomed to the sunny beaches of Santa Monica than the warring streets of Damascus, but he was one of 10 athletes at the country’s official welcoming ceremony this afternoon.
And so it has begun. No, not the World Cup, but what I call Sporting Dark Ages Syndrome. There’s nothing like a big tournament to make the country’s ad-men, publicans and shopkeepers regress to a time before Emmeline Pankhurst was a glint in her mother’s eye.
According to the wisdom coming from our shop windows, televisions [...]
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