Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Kiwis lack mental toughness, says Mallard - 28 Mar 2006 - National News

Kiwis lack mental toughness, says Mallard - 28 Mar 2006 - National News

This is one of those headlines that makes your blood boil - and it seems to come after every Commonwealth or Olympic Games.

After my initial reaction of "let's see you try a triathlon, Mr. Mallard", I thought I'd actually read the article and see what he said.

It's food for thought. There's always the question of isn't it all about participating, and it doesn't matter where you come? To which there is always the answer if you're not playing to win, don't play at all.

Interesting comments here from SPARC (Sports and Recreation Council I think) head Nick Hill:

"New Zealanders have a very strong tradition of fairness and letting everyone have a good go and sometimes I think that prevails over that outright desire to be the best in the world. I think Australians are ahead of us in that."

As a former businessman "my experience is that they are extraordinarily direct and ruthless compared to New Zealand.

"New Zealanders tend to be too nice."

That lines up with comments I've heard in the business world too. And the same day, there are headlines about New Zealand having one of the world's highest rates of domestic violence. Yikes!


At 11:26 AM, Blogger Jack Yan said...

Mallard and Hill are dead wrong. We are mentally tough but we look to the long term. We are “nice” because we see the bigger picture and how little things do not upset us as much as they might upset, say, an American. We have a competitive drive and the fact we brought home fewer medals than predicted is just down to the events on the day.
   When I learned we had a medal tally target, I thought that was ridiculous: it is better to instil excellence than to place duress on someone to reach some artificial goal that has little to do with the quality of the performer. This shows a gross misunderstanding of human nature. First we had Cullen taking credit for the TradeMe sale, and now this.
   The PC brigade who thought Labour was the nice, understanding party must surely realize the government has well and truly jumped the shark. Of course, there is no credible alternative among the major parties.

At 2:08 PM, Blogger Simon said...

Y'know what... I think I agree with you there, Jack. I'd much prefer to go with the team who has a bigger picture view.

At 6:15 PM, Blogger Jack Yan said...

Thanks, Sy! Out of transparency: I have learned through SPARC that the medal targets were offered by each sporting code in their respective business plans to the organization. Of course, this sounds funny to me—but then sports are businesses now. Nevertheless, I believe my original comments stand.


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