Channel 9′s Olympic Games blackout
Fourth quarter, 1:53 minutes to go, two points split the Boomers and Russia and the ball gets in-bounded… That’s where the story stops.
I am not sure what happened after this as Channel 9 cut to an ad break and then came back to the swimming!
Now let me just say upfront that there have been many memorable moments from Sally Pearson etching her name in the history books of Australian athletics to Steve Solomon proving his selection was warranted, the gold medal haul in the sailing and watching a childhood friend in Brendan Cole fulfill a lifelong dream of running in the 400m hurdles. The last one will stay with me forever. But I digress.
We had the usual in media fights about funding for sport, Kobe and Rice supposedly doing the pants dance, sourpuss athletes after they lose. But, once again, I digress.
By far the most annoying, disgraceful and pathetic showing at this Olympics has been the telecast of the self-proclaimed “leader of sports TV” Channel 9. Hang your heads in shame! What a farce their telecast has been.
While I understand that the Olympics are a very hard event to cover, especially with the time zone conflict, you have made my Olympic games the most frustrating experience ever.
I saw the signs early; Eddie McGuire, Karl Drunkonovic, Kenny Sutcliffe and Cameron Williams alerted me to the fact that you were heading down the wrong path, then Gyngell topped it off with inserting his wife Leila McKinnon into the fold and I realised that these Olympics were destined for network disaster.
The first week was nothing more than shambolic, with the continued cutting from sport to sport, commentators having very little idea of what they were calling and, my personal favourite, the Grant Hackett poolside interviews which were more cringeworthy than listening to Tony Abbott talk about economic policy.
But I am a forgiving man and thought, “It’s just first week nerves, week two will be much better.”
Week two. The hits just kept on coming. I am a simple man with simple needs, tell me what is on and when so I can plan my remote control fight with my wife and watch.
By the way, Channel 9, do you realise you have three channels that you can show the games on? You could have – wait for it, this idea is going to be mind-blowing for you guys – you could have shown different sports on different channels so you didn’t have to embarrass yourselves and cut from sport to sport so much.
Hey, I am no TV network exec, but I think I just solved a problem here.
Anyway, for me this Olympics has been special, as I watched a good friend take to the big stage and run his heart out for his country. He made me and many others proud of his efforts. It was this effort that makes the Olympics a special event.
Unfortunately Channel 9 couldn’t get the job done and why they spent all that money on the rights to broadcast if they were only intending to give a sub-par showing is beyond me.
Let’s just hope that in Rio 2016 they either learn their lesson or I will be buying Foxtel so I can see sports outside of swimming, equestrian and gymnastics.
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