Tuesday 22 May 2018

Barnes KOs McIlroy's Olympic excuses

Paddy Barnes. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Paddy Barnes. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Paddy Barnes blasted Rory McIlroy yesterday for not revealing earlier his reasons for swerving the Rio Olympics.

"McIlroy says golf shouldn't be in the Olympics," said Barnes. "I don't believe anything he says."

"I'd have more respect for him if he came out and told the truth as to why he's not going to compete," he added.

Three weeks from the Opening Ceremony, the only Irish boxer ever to qualify for three Olympics believes he knows the real reason why McIlroy quit.

"He's not going because Paddy Barnes is carrying the flag for Team Ireland and he isn't," alleges the man who's aiming to improve on his haul of two Olympic bronze medals for Ireland.

Speaking at the announcement of a new sponsorship deal with Paddy Power, Barnes said, "He's used three excuses already. All different stuff. Next week there'll be more stuff."

Barnes contrasts the "torture" boxers and other athletes have to put themselves through to achieve Olympic qualification with the cosy open invitation extended to McIlroy and other golfers.

"It's blood, sweat and tears for us," he said. "The golfers are told, "Go ahead. You can go." And they say, "Nah, I don't want to." It means nothing to them because they don't get money for it."

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