i Editor's Letter: Seb Coe needs to show courage over Olympics farce


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The Independent Online


In the immortal words of Sarah Palin: it's time for Seb Coe to "go rogue". What is there to lose? The Games have started; the athletes and dignitaries are mostly here. What are the IOC going to do? Go back to Beijing? We're not going to get them again for 60 years – we've already had them three times. Fifa hate us, so it won't make any difference to a World Cup bid – not when they prefer to host such a globally significant tournament in Qatar's furnace.

Come on Seb, "grow a pair" to match the courage you showed in letting Danny Boyle have his magnificent creative head. Start calling a spade a spade when it comes to all the issues surrounding the Games. Acknowledge that the seats issue is genuine; that the stadia are not all "stuffed to the gunnels [sic]"; that thousands of genuine sports fans have been unable to get tickets for events they desperately want to see and then suffer the ignominy of the so-called Olympic "family" not bothering to show at the very same events. If not us, then let in the real families of overseas athletes who have come here in vain.

Start by not using "family", when we all know it means "gravy train"; take their seats away, and sell them … not at the ridiculous £500+ a pop that we are witnessing online, but, say, £50. What about upgrading existing ticket holders? Then let the BBC impose its graphics over the awful OBS coverage. Oh, and, close Zil lanes, particularly in far-off west London. If you are truly fearless, let us wear Pepsi t-shirts to the stadia and pay however we like!

And, suddenly this sports-mad, fair-minded nation takes back the brilliant Games. Just a little.