Rio Olympics 2016: 4 great athletes who could never lay their their hands on an Olympic gold
The Olympic Gold is often considered to be the pinnacle of success that every sportsman craves for in his lifetime. While some of the great names like baseball’s Babe Ruth, squash’s Jahangir Khan and cricket’s Sachin Tendulkar have been denied the chance to have the honour courtesy their sports never featuring in the Games, others like Pele and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar never appeared on the stage.
Pele was never eligible to play for Brazil’s Olympics Team because of his professional status while Kareem Abdul-Jabbar chose to boycott the 1968 Olympics. Tiger Woods have finally found some luck as he will have a shot at the Olympic Gold this year as Golf is set to make a comeback in the Games after 112 years. However, there still remain some great athletes who conquered almost everything in their sporting careers but the shiniest medal still eluded them.
Here is a look at 5 such names from the world of sports who made several attempts at getting a gold in the quadrennial event but were denied by destiny.
#1 Lee Chong Wei
It says something about a player’s stature when the Prime Minister of his nation bestows upon him the title of National Hero. And Malaysia’s Lee Chong Wei has done almost everything to earn that respect. The badminton star, who took up the game reluctantly when banned by his mother from playing basketball at the age of 11, was ranked first worldwide for 199 consecutive weeks from 21 August 2008 to 14 June 2012.
Chong Wei emerged as the stalwart of badminton in the last decade and has dominated opponents from all nations. But the 4 time Commonwealth Games gold medalist first appeared in Olympics in 2004 but faced a second round exit. A vastly improved Wei was one of the favorites in 2008 but could manage a silver against a rampaging Lin Dan.
Lin Dan again proved to be his nemesis four years later as Chong Wei lost a hard-fought final to again settle for a silver. The Rio Olympics might well be the last chance for one of the greatest shuttlers to sign off with a gold.