They doth protest too much

“The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”
Hamlet, Act III

So wrote Shakespeare and today the phrase has entered common use as an example of someone over-compensating to make up for a mistake.

Rid us of this troublesome prosecutor!

A good example will be this Saturday when the riders on the start line of the Tour of Lombardy will hold a 10 minute protest. Some, and by no means all, were affronted by the comments by Ettore Torri, the chief prosecutor of the Italian Olympic organisation. I’ve written about the matter already and would repeat that Torri was relaying the idea that the riders he catch resort to claiming “everyone dopes”. The media then exaggerated the story.

Now maybe the interview didn’t go well but it was Torri’s first one for two years. He’s not a sharp PR operator, a media handler, a spin doctor. So I’m inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt. Even if he put his foot in his mouth, let’s forget it, it was a one-off gaff exaggerated by headlines.

Torri’s caught a lot of cheats. Protesting against the headlines he generated is ok but it makes the bunch look a touch too sensitive. Like or not, the 10 minute protest risks coming across as a demonstration against Torri and his anti-doping role rather than the exaggerated headlines his interview generated.

  •  Footnote: Torri’s almost an unknown figure. A search for photos on him to accompany this piece brings up way more photos of Di Luca, Basso, Pellizotti, Valverde and a host of doped soccer players that CONI has caught. It only highlights how he’s not the story here, that the real deal is the ongoing cheating.

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