London, Great Britain, July 30, 2012 – Monday is a very special day in London, not just because it is Day 3 of the beach volleyball competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games in the purpose-built, sold-out 15,000-seat stadium on the grounds of the iconic Horse Guards Parade as the majestic venue also includes a portion of adjacent St. James Park in historic central London.
It’s happy birthday time during this Olympic Games for six athletes competing in the beach volleyball competition in central London including one very special one today.
If this sport bestowed royalty, among the first to receive the blessing would certainly be the USA’s legendary three-time Olympian, two-time gold medalist Misty May-Treanor.
Misty May-Treanor, the legendary soft-spoken, amazingly-gifted American player who is this sport’s version of supreme royalty, is having a birthday party in her honor tonight being thrown by the mostly British crowd that continues to fill this magnificent arena for each session of the competition. The joyous crowd has graciously and joyously embraced all the athletes in this amazing athletic competition, being held in what this sport would easily call the Buckingham Palace of beach volleyball.
Misty May-Treanor turns 35 years young Monday, but when she and her six feet of sunshine two-time Olympic gold medalist partner Kerri Walsh artistically work the sand tonight at 11 p.m. against Czech Republic’s Kristyna Kolocova/Marketa Slukova, the world will be able to watch ever so close on a very public, private moment of May-Treanor’s birthday celebration.
When May-Treanor leaves the center court for the final time after these Olympic Games she will have left the sport in a much better place than it was before she graduated as an All-American indoor player from Southern California’s Cal State University-Long Beach where she was part of the 1998 NCAA Championship team and was awarded the NCAA Championship Co-MVP.
In all of her on court accomplishments, both domestically in the USA and internationally with the FIVB, May has also been forced to sit out nearly two years with career-threatening injuries that she has obviously overcome.
For a brief recap of your FIVB international career, including three world championships and two Olympic gold medals, May-Treanor individually is competing in her 98th all-time FIVB international event here in London having earned an amazing 74 final four appearances, winning 42 gold medals, 18 silver, eight bronze and six fourth place finishes in her illustrious individual career.
For the record, May-Treanor has won a gold medal on her birthday once when she and Walsh won their match in 2005 in an FIVB Grand Slam event in Paris.
In the epilogue, it truly isn’t for either May-Treanor nor her teammate Walsh about winning and losing, it’s about how they played the game and no one has played it any better than Misty May-Treanor.
Truly she epitomizes the slogan of these Olympic Games as she has inspired a generation...
Not only is this May-Treanor’s birthday, it is her final hours upon this eternal Olympic stage. As they might say here tonight as she holds court in this palace in Horse Guards Parade, in a most jolly-old-England way....
Happy Birthday, your highness--Lady Misty, princess of the court.
Birthday greetings are also sent these Olympic Games to these other great athletes celebrating here in London at this stupendous XXX Olympiad.
A tip of the hat with birthday greetings during these London 2012 Olympic Games to these beach volleyball athletes...
Misty May-Treanor, USA, 30 July 1977 (35)
Jennifer Kessy, USA, 31 July 1977 (35)
Janis Smedins, Latvia, 31 July 1987 (25)
Paolo Nicolai, Italy, 6 August 1988 (24)
Stefanie Schwaiger, Austria, 7 August 1986 (26)
Louise Bawden, Australia, 7 August 1981 (31)
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