Abebe Bikila 1960, 64& Feyisa Lilesa 2016


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Tubby Ethiopian swimmer Robel Kiros Habte becomes world's favourite athlete of the 2016 Olympics - Mirror Online

He's the most unlikely Olympian in Brazil… but that's exactly why everyone loves the swimmer with the 'dad bod'

Who's your favourite athlete competing at 2016 Olympics?
Usain Bolt? Michael Phelps? Jessica Ennis?
Wrong, wrong and wrong. Take a look at the clip above and we GUARANTEE your new favourite person at the Rio Games will be Ethiopian swimmer Robel Kiros Habte.
The footage shows Habte giving his all during the heats of the 100m freestyle. This picture of him on the blocks should give you some idea how he got on:

REUTERSRobel Kiros Habte of Ethiopia competes
A fine figure of a man

Sure enough, Habte didn't win the race. In fact, Habte ended up so far behind his fellow competitors, it almost seemed like he was competing in an entirely different sport.
Our man clocked a time of 64.95 seconds in the three-man heat - a massive SEVENTEEN seconds behind Australian pacesetter Kyle Chalmers (47.90).

GettyRobel Kiros Habte of Ethiopia competes

The 24 year-old - who weights in at a pretty hefty 12.5 stone - finished 59th out of the 59 swimmers in the heats.
And the effort he put in, combined with his uniquely wonderful 'dad bod', saw him get an amazing reception:

Mind you, as that tweet from journalist Jai Bednall reminds us, Habte is far from the most unlikely swimmer seen at an Olympics.

Remember Eric "The Eel" Moussambani, the guy from Equatorial Guinea who decided to give swimming a go at the 2000 Sydney Olympics?

GettyEric ''the Eel'' Moussambani
Eric ''the Eel'' Moussambani

Moussambani became a global star after he took a remarkable 1min 52.72sec to complete the same 100m freestyle event as Habte - nearly 50 seconds LONGER than the Ethiopian.
Relive that glorious moment here: