Forget gold, silver shone brighter at Eton Dorny
Never mind all those home golds. For those of us based at Eton Dorney, nothing defined the Olympic spirit better than twin images of silver.
Millions were moved by the vivid physical and emotional torments of Zac Purchase and Mark Hunter, foiled so narrowly in the defence of the double sculls gold they won in Beijing. But few can have seen the obverse of the medal that seemed to weigh so heavily upon their necks.
Last Wednesday, a different partnership was thwarted in an even tighter finish - one of bare millimetres - in the men’s double kayak final. With superior momentum, Fernando Pimenta and Emmanuel Silva had flashed over the line alongside the favourites, from Hungary. The Portuguese pair began delirious celebrations, Pimenta hurling himself into the lake. Frame by frame, however, the replay revealed that the leaders had just held out.
We waited, aghast, for their defeat to register. And waited. And we’re still waiting. Pimenta and Silva were so ecstatic to win Portugal’s only medal of the fortnight that they refused to allow the infinitesimal margin to dilute their joy.
As the three pairs went onto the pontoon for the podium ceremony, anyone would assume these jumping, waving, whooping lads had won gold.
And, even as Britons celebrate winning so much, it is good to be reminded that their priority has always been how the Games are played.
Pornhub: Cheeky Liverpool fan uploads Philippe Coutinho wonder-goal video to adult website
Watch the moment a basketball player reassures a small boy after a mass brawl erupted on court
Eden Hazard didn't like the champagne on offer in the Chelsea dressing room
Jon Stewart brings The Daily Show to WWE Raw as Seth Rollins pays the price for feud with TV presenter
Why Manchester City could turn to Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers if Manuel Pellegrini is dismissed
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
- 3 Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
- 4 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 5 Average penis size revealed: Scientists attempt to find what is 'normal' to reassure concerned men
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'