A Short Tale of Polish Sports (Mis)Adventures

I have just read Vitória’s article about Brazilian soccer and envy them for having so many successful players to idolize. Then I conducted a quick survey among my lovely international co-workers. The question was: do you know any famous Polish sportsmen/women? The answer was ‘no’ and it didn’t really surprise me. Why does a 38-million nation lack even one international sport star?

And it is a nation of sport lovers, really. We have most devoted fans and as soon as a sportsman (of ANY discipline) starts to be successful, they will follow him (or her, of course) to competitions in even most exotic countries, cheer for him, watch all the games, matches etc. on TV, found fan clubs, wear T-shirts with his name and so on and so forth. There’s an enormous need for this success and it really makes people happy. It’s just such a pity it happens so seldom.

The Polish (like many other nations, of course) particularly love soccer. Whenever our team qualifies for World or Euro Cup it’s a huge event and hopes are getting higher and higher every day that maybe this time we’ll achieve something for a change. And we never do. 🙂 Somehow, especially in the last few years not only did we lose most of our games and ended our struggles on the group level, but also we always had to play against our biggest “enemy” – Germany. Such a game is always a great reason for tabloids in both countries (owned by the same publishing house btw) to heat up the atmosphere and spread negative feelings. On the way the sport spirit gets lost, unfortunately. And then there are these “Polish” players on the German team (Podolski and Klose) who are another source of unnecessary speculations, comments and complaints. I have no idea what should be done to make our team start winning but I’m sure SOMETHING should be done because I’d like to see the tears of joy on the fan’s faces when our team finally begins to score more often…

But come on, I thought. There ARE some Polish sportsmen who are or have recently been quite successful and if most people still don’t know them it’s high time to change that. And without further ado I present my little…

POLISH SPORTS HALL OF FAME 🙂

Agnieszka Radwańska, is a WTA Tour top 10 tennis player. On 24 May 2008, she became the first Polish female tennis player to surpass US$1 million in career prize money. Link

Robert Kubica, first Polish Formula One driver. In June 2008 he achieved his maiden F1 victory in the unpredictable Canadian Grand Prix after having a serious accident on the same track in the previous year. Link

Adam Małysz, ski jumper, first to win the World Cup three times in row, won impressive 38 World Cup competitions and is still an active sportsman so this result might even get more impressive someday. Link

These are just a few examples, might not seem spectacular compared to other countries but still we are proud of them. And let’s not forget! Poland will host the UEFA Euro Cup along with Ukraine in 2012. So please come visit Poland and enjoy unforgettable soccer atmosphere!

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