Opinions: Were they robbed?

SIR ROBIN DAY: You can't have mob rule on these things. Nobody ever explains the rules on television these days. When I did programmes on the Common Agricultural Policy or whatever, I'd explain what they meant, you see, but nobody ever does that now so one never knows what's going on.

BEN ELTON, comedian: I don't want to come over all Michael Portillo and start talking about cheating foreigners, but I do confess I was absolutely stunned at the marks. The only consolation was to see Torvill and Dean handling their disappointment with the same superlative grace that they show on ice.

MARY EVANS YOUNG, Dietbreakers: I thought they were the best. Of course Jayne isn't fat] It was the judges, not Jayne, that let the side down. It's typical that her body is blamed rather than her skills and abilities. She already does everything that Christopher Dean does, but backwards, and now they want her to do it on an empty stomach as well.

DAVID CLEMENTS, skating director, Queen's Ice Club: It was the best I've ever seen them skate; they lost on the technical side, artistically they were first. They were judged on an illegal move but then all the other skaters had illegal moves - it's a question of what's more illegal than something else. You win some, you lose some, that's sport.

PAUL BURGESS, ice-cube delivery man: They'd had their day and that was it - they shouldn't have come back, it was embarrassing when they didn't get the gold, and they just looked old surrounded by all those youngsters.

DEBBIE TURNER, PA to Torvill and Dean: Jayne and Chris have received about 300 telegrams and faxes from all over the world from the likes of Julie Andrews and Blake Edwards, the English National Ballet and the Bank of Norway who wrote 'We hope we're not robbed like you were'. Jayne's mother phoned me and said Jayne and Christopher have given 18 years of their lives to this sport and this is how they get treated]

BORIS SYLVAN, manager, Nikita's Russian restaurant: I was for Torvill and Dean because it was great to do a come-back and the Russians have plenty of time to do it again. They had a lot of guts coming back after 10 years.

BELINDA EDWARDS, assistant features editor, Harpers & Queen: I'd broken two hot dates that night just so I could rush home and watch the skating. It was grossly unfair. I found it very confusing because the crowd was elated and I thought they'd won; I felt lost and abandoned when I realised they hadn't. I had to have a bath to recover, I couldn't even watch the medal ceremony.

ABIGAIL, aged 11: I think they should have won, because they're the best. It's really unfair to say that Jayne is fat. Tonya Harding's legs are really big and muscly. Jayne's bum is quite big compared to my skating teacher's, but compared to my mum's it's nice and small.

(Photograph omitted)

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