EL BARRIO, EL FALLS – Happy Monday. I am gonna pull an Angry Ward and talk about something totally unrelated to the current news in the sports world. Today’s topic is Sports and Intra-Family Rivalries.
Accra Hearts of Oak tied Accra Great Olympics 1-1 in the big Accra derby in the Accra Sports Stadium, in Accra, Ghana in a top of the table clash for the Ghanaian Premier League. This means that Accra Great Olympics win the series as they won the earlier meeting 2-0.
Now, soccer puts our fans to sleep, so I can imagine how much a soccer game in Ghana would cure insomnia… but like one of my fave comedians Ron White says “I told you that story so I could tell you this story.”
My brother and I normally support the same teams. As the little brother, I usually followed him and whoever he liked… Except for college sports and Accra soccer. In college sports, he was a Notre Dame guy and I choose the only team in NY State, Syracuse. It wasn’t because I was a homer, it was because, Raghib “Rocket” Ishmail was with Notre Dame and when I heard he had a younger brother, Quadry, who was with Syracuse, I couldn’t help but support the less famous brother. The first time, and inspiration for this story, is when I chose to support Accra Great Olympics, the Mets of the two major Accra teams. The Hearts of Oak are the Yankees. They have been around longer, have more league titles and even a catchier song.
But this lifelong decision I made? I made at 5 years-old. Let’s go back to that fateful day: I was getting ready for school, in Ghana, so that meant the whole shirt and tie thing. My mom was getting me dressed and she asked which team was I going to support because she was Olympics but my dad and my brothers were Hearts. What was I supposed to do, look my mom in the eye and tell her, her last son, her baby boy was also gonna betray her? So I became an Accra Great Olympics fan… I have seen them fall down to the third division but they are now are back in the first division… with a chance at the title! The amount of trash talk and banter leading up to this game was so beautiful. I forgot the joy of jaw-jacking with my brother and, of course, the cousins. It appears everyone on my dad’s side of the family is Hearts, so it appears it is my mom’s side that is Oly – so I stood alone. It felt great winning the season series, but it looks like with 7 or so games left, Hearts might win the title. I certainly hope that doesn’t happen as that banter will be unbearable.
Thanks for reading, comment below and come back tomorrow for Ben Whitney, who will give you the latest news on the NBA and NHL. No pressure, Benny.