LOUIS BURKE | Culture | CONTACT
Nans around Australia have a smile wider than an Olypian’s arm span upon hearing the dulcet tones of Olympic swimming legend Ian Thorpe on the telly.
World champion at 15, Thorpey has long been a favourite of Australian nans and mums as he inspired children to strive to do their best and eat their breakfast cereal all while maintaining his charming nonchalant grin, usually crowned with the latest trendy hairdo.
One such nan is Jennifer Heal (83) of Betoota Heights, who despite having no interest in Olympic Swimming since Thorpey retired, demanded her family remain silent as the veteran commentated the day’s swimming events.
“Shut up!” demanded Heal, as Thorpey’s commentary took her back to the image of the wetsuit clad youth rising triumphantly from the pool.
“Thorpey’s on the telly!”
According to Heal’s children and grandchildren, nan’s been known to swoon over a variety of cricketers and footy players over the years, but remains ever faithful to Thorpey and his golden reputation.
“All of his charity work for the kids bless him. He even kept appearing on Australia’s Next Top Model, there’s nothing more charitable than that surely.”