Athletes who make us proud


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The Independent Online

Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah are the two Olympic athletes who have made people proudest to be British, says a new poll published this week.

The survey for British Future also shows that viewers want the BBC to screen more women's sport and athletics to maintain the enthusiasm "bounce" now that the Games are over.

Half of those surveyed said the heptathlete Ennis made them proud to be British, while 43 per cent identified the double gold-medal winner Farah. Some 29 per cent chose the gold medal cyclist and Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins, while 25 per cent said the cycling track star Sir Chris Hoy made them proud. Respondents were allowed to choose two or three athletes from a list. Andy Murray was picked by 15 per cent and flyweight boxing gold-medallist Nicola Adams by 12 per cent.

The poll is published in a report by British Future, a new think tank focusing on identity and integration, entitled Team GB: How 2012 Should Boost Britain.

In recognition of the many prominent female medal winners, 62 per cent said the BBC should show as much women's sport as men's. And 71 per cent want the BBC to show sporting events that "bring the nation together".