In a press statement posted on the webpage of Romania’s Olympic Committee (COSR), COSR Chairman Alin Petrache (photo) says he takes full responsibility for Romania having failed to achieve its objectives at the recently concluded Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games.
”I want to take responsibility before the public opinion in Romania as COSR chairman for the team’s failure to achieve the objectives for the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games. An analysis of all responsibilities, results and preparations for the competition will be performed inside the technical board, as normal, which I will convene in the shortest time provided for by the regulations. In the first meeting of the executive committee, I, and hopefully the entire management, will tender our resignations to those who selected us so as to avoid activities getting stymied for hierarchical reasons,” says Petrache.
He also calls on the public to side with the Romanian athletes and coaches no matter what the results of the latter are. “Disappointments, sadness and joys are for all of us to share, and only by showing our support for what they do can we encourage and motivate them to take on new athletic challenges.”
Petrache voices hope that Rio 2016 will mark a new beginning for Romania’s sports: ”Maybe the Rio Olympic Games will be the milestone to indicate the end of a journey in Romania’s sports and at the same time a new beginning, a structural, deep-going change, a legislative, financial and functional linkage of Romania’s sports community to the 21st century’s athletic realities. Romania’s sports today are stuck in a legislative and organisational framework of the last century, the 1970s-1980s. Individual performance, the remarkable efforts of athletes and coaches alike, their sacrifices and the sacrifices of their families cannot be a substitute for an obsolete athletic system nationwide.”
Petrache adds that Romania’s results at Rio 2016 are a confirmation of today’s realities in the country’s sports, and that amateurish, gung-ho measures, even ennobled by the extraordinary efforts of some federations, exceptional athletes and coaches cannot lead to systemic performances.
He says ”no single or more persons, elected or appointed in the organisation of sports clubs, federations, COSR or the relevant ministry may change the Romanian sports system by their coming or leaving. Structural change does not depend on people, functions or organizational charts.” The official argues that a national agreement on sports is needed that will integrate all the segments of the school, university, amateur and professional sports for a 10-20-year development perspective in a legislative and financial framework guaranteed by law, with an organisational and operational composition in line with the realities of the world we live in. That, he says, will be a prerequisite for the revival of Romania’s sports.
Petrache has thanked the Romanian athletes and coaches who made up the Rio 2016 team. ”It was an honour to me to be with you. As I’ve always said, victories are yours alone,” the Olympic official says, also voicing good wishes for the Romanian sports journalists, whose hearts were with the Romanian Olympic team.
”To all Romanian athletes who starting today are looking forward to the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games: Do not lose hope! You will be there and win!” says Petrache.
Before the opening of the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games, Petrache said that taking into account the estimates of the athletic federations of Romania, the country should win between six and eight, even nine medals.
Romania sent 96 athletes and 7 alternates to Rio de Janeiro, returning with five medals – a gold, a silver and three bronzes.
Youth and Sports Minister Lipa: Rio Games medalists deserve our respect
The Minister for Youth and Sports, Elisabeta Lipa, has congratulated Romanian athletes that have won medals in the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games in a release posted on the ministry’s website and stated that they “deserve our respect.”
“The medalists at the Rio Olympic Games deserve our respect, together with the team that contributed to their success, at the most important competition in the world. I congratulate them and I assure them of the full support that the ministry can offer for continuing their road towards performance,” Lipa states in the message.
The minister however showed disappointment towards the fact that the results do not measure up to the “unprecedented” investments in Romanian sport in this year.
“Unfortunately our expectations, although high, as expected from the unprecedented investments ni this year, proved to be less confirmed by the final results. As I said before, before the Olympic Games, it is essential to be together with the athletes that are achieving or wishing high performance, but especially to create the framework for the entire sporting system, including the one for the masses, including the educational component,” emphasized Lipa, a quintuple Olympic champion in rowing.
“I trust that the people responsible that are involved in elaborating the new Sports and Physical Education Law will understand the importance of the delicate moment that Romanian sports is in and will offer the new framework that sports need,” the minister of Youth and Sports also declared.