Australian Olympic hero Harry Garside grabbed the gizzards of Australia at the Tokyo Olympics last year, where he won a bronze medal.
This was the first time in more than three decades that an Australian had medaled in boxing at the Olympics. It was also a night where stereotypes were questioned. Why? Garside is someone who likes to do things differently.
Garside likes to incorporate Ballet into his training routine. He also likes to paint his nails. Rather than be cowed by tired old cliches, though, Garside is very much his own man, and is inspiring others with his refreshing approach.
As The Guardian reports, Garside once said: “I say I do it for boxing, but really, I have always wanted to dance. Ballet’s very tough, the power through the legs that they generate, the coordination, everything is just so extreme.”
“There’s a lot of people out there who feel like they have to be something because they’re a male or a female. I’m all about just being different.”Harry Garside
He’s also down to earth. After winning the first gold medal in his collection (at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 on the Gold Coast) he told media: “I’m just an ordinary bloke. I’m back plumbing, back on the shovel and back with the boys.”
This is what it’s all about! We’re so excited to have @HarryGarside2 bronze medal 🥉 from #Tokyo2020 on display inside our Olympic Gallery.— Australian Sports Museum (@ausportsmuseum) March 22, 2022
From icon @Grant_Hackett inspiring him, Harry hopes his medal will motivate the next generation of Australian Olympians. #NoOrdinaryMuseum pic.twitter.com/Xe8ufvjqlf
Keeping in tune with his reputation for being a low-key legend, Garside took to Instagram on Tuesday to tell his followers he had decided to donate his Olympic bronze medal to the @mcg sports museum.
The 24-year-old said he wanted to inspire other Aussie sportspeople by doing so.
Garside wrote on Instagram: “I remember going to the MCG sports museum when I was in my teens. I walked away feeling inspired to hopefully one day also be amongst these Aussie sportsman and women. I donated this medal in the hope to inspire the next generation of young superstars so they may know that they are enough and can be whatever they set their mind to.”
He also said in an Australian Sports Museum video: “I still feel like that kid who was inspired by Grant Hackett in 2004… and 20 years later I’m still chasing the Olympic gold.”
Speaking about his bronze medal being donated to the museum, he said: “I just hope now some young person sees that and just strives to get in the middle… and gets that gold medal.”
“Maybe when I’m older it might mean something more to me when I have kids or something like that. But at the moment, mate, I think it’ll be better off in display for young people.”