Rio Olympics open in spectacular style

Sport360 staff 07:09 06/08/2016
The 2016 Olympic Games are now underway.

Beneath the green and gold embrace of Christ the Redeemer, Vanderlei de Lima lit up the Rio 2016 Olympics at the Maracana Stadium late on Friday night.

Famous for being denied gold in the 2004 Olympic marathon when he was assaulted by a spectator, de Lima might be seen as a metaphor for the International Olympic Committee’s mighty stumble.

A four-hour carnival of Bossa Nova and baille-funk, Gisele Bundchen’s retiring catwalk swagger and a Girl from Ipanema; all succeeded for at least one night in overshadowing the chronic issues afflicting the Olympic movement.

Rio’s ability to put on a carnival was never open to question. But its captivating beat and tropical colour could only partially obscure a precipice as steep as the sides of Sugarloaf Mountain upon which the Games’ very future teeters.

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