American Gold Medal Swimmer Lilly King Calls Out Drug Cheats When Olympic Officials Won’t
American Gold Medal Swimmer Lilly King is proving to be a champion in more ways than just the shiny hardware she can now wear proudly around her neck.
King has been outspoken on drug cheats being allowed to compete in the Olympics.
USA Today’s Christine Brennan has been doing a wonderful job of covering the controversy.
She reports this particular spat centers around King and her rival, Russia’s Yulia Efimova.
The Russian the 2012 bronze medalist and world champion who has been banned twice for using illegal substances.
That ban included these Olympics, or so it seemed until Efimova was mysteriously brought back hours before she was to compete.
From the beginning, King has been outspoken saying she doesn’t think athletes who have tested dirty should be allowed at the Olympics.
That set up a battle of finger wags.
King wagged her finger with a #1 when she won her 100 meter breast stroke semi-final on Sunday.
Efimova followed with one when she won her semi-final heat.
King caught that maneuver watching on a backstage monitor and was not amused.
Lilly King doesn’t hold back.
— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) August 8, 2016
After that race, King told USA Today, “Basically, what happened this morning was that I finished and then I waved my finger a little bit, because that’s kind of how I am. Then tonight just now Yulia got done with her swim and I am watching in the ready room – and there she is there shaking her finger. So then I got done and I beat her time so I waved my finger again. People probably think I am serving it up a little bit but that is just how I am.”
It’s so refreshing to see a young woman own being strong, motivated and opinionated.
“That’s just my personality. I’m not this sweet little girl, that’s not who I am,” King said of the now-viral finger wag. “If I do need to stir it up to put a little fire under my butt or anybody else then that’s what I’m going to do.”
This 19-year-old backed up her words with her performance, winning the Gold Medal in the 100-meter breast stroke and beating Efimova who took silver.
USA Today’s Brennan does a great job explaining how big a deal cheating is across the sport and how impressive it is that a 19-year-old from Indiana University has the guts to call out what Olympic officials will not.