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Cheating in the Ancient Olympics Games

Cheating was not uncommon in the ancient Summer Games. Athletes used to rub themselves up with oil to protect their skin from dirt and sunlight. The wrestlers were not allowed to use oil. They were supposed to dust themselves with a powder. However, some wrestlers cheated by rubbing oil over some part of the body making it slippery for an opponent to grab. Such athletes used to be punished very severely.

Punishment for Athletes in ancient Summer Games

In the ancient Summer Games, there were rules for every game contested for. Those who cheated or violated the rules were disqualified from the contest. Along with the contestant, the trainer and the sponsoring city-state were also fined.

Cheaters could be punished by whipping or levying heavy fines on them. The money from these fines was used to construct bronze statues of Zeus. These statues were placed along the tunnel that leads to the stadium. Each statue's inscription told the cautionary tale of the offense. The athletes walked past these statues as a reminder of the importance of obeying the rules.

Recorded incidents of Cheating in ancient Summer Games

The first incident of cheating in the history of the ancient Summer Games occurred in 388 BC. Eupolus, the boxer of Thessaly, bribed three opponents to take a dive. He was fined with a huge amount of money to build six bronze statues of Zeus.

Some participants were induced to swap allegiance, often at the risk of exile from their homelands. Winners of the ancient Summer Games were known to bring religious favor and glory to their city-states. For this reason, many city-states tried to bribe athletes to participate in the games as their representative. The city-state of Syracuse was as notorious as New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner in its quest for free agents that would bring religious favor and glory. When Syracuse induced sprint champion Astylos to quit Kroton in southern Italy, his admirers in the hometown tore down his statue and turned his house into a prison.

Olympic corruption reached the climax during the Roman reign. In 67 AD, Emperor Nero bribed the judges to include poetry reading in the schedule of the Summer Games as an event. The judges also declared Nero the chariot champion, despite his not finishing the race.

Last Updated On : May 31, 2016

Team USA defeated team Serbia to win its third straight basketball gold medal in Men’s Basketball tournament. The winning team’s coach Mike Krzyzewski was utmost delighted with his team’s victory on the final day of Rio 2016 Olympic Games. USA won by a 19-15 lead and this is their 25th straight victory at the Olympic Games in addition to the 15th straight victory in the basketball tournament. 

Mo Farah of Great Britain has bagged the gold by winning the 5000 meters final and completed the double double. According to media reports, with this victory Farah has become the second man in the history of Olympics to be able to successfully defend his 5000 and 10000 Olympic championships. His victory is being hailed on Twitter with some calling him the greatest long distance runner of all time. Meanwhile, the silver medal has gone to Paul Kipkemoi Chelimo and Dejen Gebremeskel of Ethiopia has bagged the bronze.

In the women's event, Caster Semenya of South Africa won the Olympic gold in the 800m. She won in one minute 55.28 seconds.  Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi won the silver medal and Kenya's Margaret Nyairera Wambui bagged the bronze.

Chen Long of China has taken gold medal in the Rio Olympics 2016 after defeating Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, who has won a silver in men’s badminton today. Lee was facing pressure not to lose the match. He beat Lin Dan of China in the semi-final. Lee and Lin, both are considered to be the best players of their time. With Lee’s defeat, Malaysia has missed out the chance of getting an Olympic gold medal.


Italy came up with a win and is heading to men's volleyball final against Brazil, after defeating USA. The US men's volleyball team tried all their survival skills, but could not stand in front of Italy. The winning team's thriller was 30-28, 26-28, 9-25, 25-22, 15-9. After it was over, US coach John Speraw said that the team was not skilled enough and they did not execute on some of the opportunities, which Italy flawlessly did

French boxer Estelle Mossely celebrated her 24th birthday by winning a gold medal in Women’s lightweight boxing championship. She defeated China’s Yin Junhua after the end of four rounds that had the two defending champions leveled on the scorecards of three judges. The bronze medals were earned by Mira Potkonen of Finland and Anastasia Beliakova of Russia.

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