There’s nothing more interesting to the audience of a sport to hear a smart-alec commentator who acts as though he knows everything be proven wrong. Well, at least it’s interesting to me. I mean, take a look at the football pundits. They didn’t take Joe Fanboy off the streets, oh no, they actually have qualified experts who’ve actually kicked a ball in front of live spectators who paid to watch them play the game. That’s great. Instant credibility right there. But that doesn’t stop them from being wrong, and sometimes, horrendously wrong.
I always grin at the guy who goes, “There’s no doubt about it, there’s too much quality in the [insert footie club] side”, or “I can’t see them losing this”, and when the match is lost, they go, “No one could have expected this, [insert the above footie club] played well below par, etc, etc”.
Nothing wrong with experts making mistakes, of course. I’m just saying it’s entertaining to have them get their faces rubbed in.
So here comes my point (yeah, I belaboured it, so bite me) – if you like this, and if I were a sports commentator, you’d be having some fun at my expense. I have written off Lee Chong Wei after his not-again loss to Lin Dan at the All-England. As usual, supporting Chong Wei was an exhausting affair – you kept holding your breath hoping he’d whack Lin Dan, waving your arms and all that only to find that you’ve been doing it the whole match and you get tired.
So I watched the Swiss Open final warily. If there’s such a thing as watching a badminton match nonchalantly, I was doing it. And if I was the sports commentator, I would be reiterating the fact that Lin Dan has won the last [insert number] encounters between the two.
But Chong Wei won. He played the game I was screaming at him to play from my living room during the All-England final last week.
If I was a sports commentator, I’d be saying, “Lin Dan played well below par, etc, etc.”
Maybe I should be a sports commentator. Hey, ESPN, want someone to relieve Gillian Clark?