What the papers say: Funding row mars Olympic success

It should have been a good week for British sport. Shelley Rudman’s unexpected silver medal in the skeleton bob had all the elements of a good media story – unknown female talent overcomes lack of funding to take silver in a sport that is unheard of by most of us.

'Rudman was in Turin only because of a whip round at her local pub' (The Times 17 February); 'Fame and fortune beckon for the girl on a tea tray' (The Daily Telegraph, 18 February). As Britain does not even have a full bobsleigh track and this was Rudman's first full season of competition at the top level, 'you realise how remarkable her skeleton medal was' (bbc.co.uk, 17 February).

Rudman's victory against the odds stood in contrast to a political row over funding for the 2012 Olympics, prompted by news that young athletes were quitting because of a lack of money. 

The finger of blame was pointed at Gordon Brown, perceived as 'dragging his heels about committing taxpayers' money to a venture on which he was lukewarm' (The Times, 17 February). 'It will be a dead-loss London Olympics at this rate', warned The Daily Telegraph (14 February).

Analysis and commentary by Echo Research. This article and further information is at: www.echoResearch.com

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