Thousand Pounds Olympics – Soviet Sport

On August 14, 1948, the first post-war Summer Olympics ended in London. The competition took place in Spartan conditions and was called "Austerity Games". AGGRESSORS – GERMANY AND JAPAN – OUT OF THE GAME The previous Olympics were held in 1936 in the capital of the Third Reich, Berlin. It was supposed to become a propaganda triumph of the fascist regime. But not everything went as smoothly as Hitler and his hop company wanted. For example, black American sprinter Jesse Owens won four gold medals. It was a challenge to a regime where racial segregation would soon become official policy, and what happened next is well known. The 1940 Games were supposed to take place in Helsinki, but due to the Second World War that began a year earlier, they did not take place. The next Olympics in 1944 was supposed to host London. It is clear that these Games were not destined to take place either. In the summer of 1944, British aircraft were ironing Dresden and Berlin all over. And now 12 years have passed, the world has gone through an older war that took millions of lives. The country that hosted the previous Games has not existed for three years. Its top leaders were dead, and the smaller leaders got what they deserved, according to the decisions of the Nuremberg Tribunal. And when the IOC began to determine with the participating countries, a unanimous decision was made – the recent aggressors – Germany and Japan – have no place here. The newly created state of Israel expressed its desire to take part in the Games. But the Arab countries threatened to boycott, and the organizers decided not to aggravate the situation. Moreover, Israel was not yet a member of the IOC and was admitted to the organization in 1952 along with the Soviet Union. But representatives of a number of countries, at that time, the Third World – Burma, Venezuela, Guiana, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Pakistan, debuted at the Olympics. Puerto Rico, Singapore, Syria, Trinidad, Ceylon, South Korea, Jamaica. OPENING UNDER BIG BEN HITS The opening ceremony of the Games took place on July 29th and began at 14:00 local time at Wembley Stadium in the presence of over 85 thousands of viewers. Soon after the ceremony began, King George VI and his wife Queen Elizabeth arrived at the stadium. The opening speech was first made by Lord Burleigh, the initiator of London's bid for the 1948 Games. Then the floor was given to the king, in his speech George VI said the following. “The hour has struck. A dream that was previously only a vision has now become a glorious reality. By 1945, when the world conflict ended, many institutions and organizations disintegrated and only the strongest survived. How many wondered how the great Olympic movement managed to survive? Big Ben's bell rang solemnly at 4 pm and George VI announced the XIV Olympic Games open. These Games were the first to be shown on television. The BBC radio and television company devoted 60 hours to the Olympics in its broadcasting schedule. All events were broadcast live only – this is the opening ceremony and sports competitions. Broadcast rights cost the BBC £ 1,000. PREGNANT CHAMPION AND THE GREAT SWEDISH TRIO The organizers were crumpled up for the 1948 Games as the war ended just three years ago. In London, not a single new facility was erected; the existing sports facilities were simply put in order. Athletes and coaches lived in Spartan conditions, spectators watched many competitions while standing. Because of this, the 1948 Games were called "harsh". The Olympic program practically did not change. Only handball was excluded, but women competed for the first time in rowing and canoeing. The main heroine of the Olympics was the Dutch athlete Fani Blankers-Kuhn who won four gold medals. And she was pregnant. 17-year-old American Robert Matthias won the decathlon, becoming the youngest Olympic champion in history. The Swedish national team won the football tournament. The great three Gre-No-Li shone in it – Gunnar Gren Gunnar Nordahl and Nils Lindholm . In the team competition, the USA national team won an unconditional victory. Pay attention to the success of the Swedes and Finns – hardly ever when the athletes of these Scandinavian countries won so many medals at the Summer Games. Medal standings of the 1948 Games Place country s cb total1 USA 38 27 19 842 Sweden 16 11 17 443 France 10 6 13 294 Hungary 10 5 12 275 Italy 8 11 8 276 Finland 8 7 5 20

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