The world’s most awaited sporting extravaganza is officially up and running now. Yes, the Rio Olympics started off with a bang on Friday night in Brazil, finally as 200 countries marched one by one, showing their presence in the world event.
It is almost bizarre to realize this that Olympics is being held in South America for the first time since its inception.
And What a reception it received from the world. The opening ceremony is estimated to be broadcast to audience of three billion. The number shows the anticipation among the fans for this event, which comes only once in four years. The highlights of the opening ceremony was Brazil’s celebration of its history and natural beauty.
The only upset which was there last night was the absence of legendary footballer Pele, who missed the event as he was not in the right ‘physical condition’. The honor to lit the Olympic cauldron went to the marathon runner Vanderlei de Lima.
The opportunity to host Olympics has not come very easy to Brazil. They had to wait for a very long time and even after being given the responsibility to host it, there were many challenges in front of them.
Two days back, when the Olympics torch reached Brazil’s capital, it was welcomed with a lot of protest. Police had to use tear gas and stun grenades to clear the roads. People are fuming in anger in Brazil. They complain of lack of infrastructure, facilities. They want a better country, first and Olympics, later on. The debate of what should be the priority goes on and on.
Nevertheless, the same amount of population is also excited and proud that they are hosting Olympics. The challenge though did not end here. The Zika Virus and the Russian doping scandal had brought fresh set of challenges. The Games overcame each one of them, one by one.
While Gisele and Tonga were the showstoppers on Friday night in the opening ceremony. It was the representation of Brazil’s history that seized the day for them. The organizers did not shy away from showing the negative side of their history – slavery. This made an impressive statement – that Brazil was proud to overcome a lot of challenges to become the first South American country ever to host Olympics.
Now the the Games are open and running, let the controversies step aside and champions take over. Enjoy the games.