We want five...
Never settle for less than best
Pinsent, the most experienced man in the boat, epitomised why the four managed to take gold against all odds.
"To begin with, I thought, 'How can we possibly win now?'," he said.
"Then I began thinking of trying to rescue the situation, 'a bronze or a silver would be a great result now' kind of approach.
"But I have never settled for anything less than the best since I was a schoolboy.
"I have rowed so badly as not to have deserved a medal, I have rowed myself and the crew into a tired and dejected position where winning was impossible, but gone out to try to win a silver?
Brilliant. Fantastic. Hooray!
I know a few of the regular readers of this site will sigh when they read this. They'll accuse me of mindless, blind and egotistical thinking and stupid nationalistic sentiment...but, sod it. This is what happens when you love anything, not just a country! I was over the moon with victory for the coxless men's four in the Olympic rowing....it was the romance of the story which made me think this was just how the Brits should win. The odds were against us, the Canadian world champs were sneering at us, everything was in disarray. Then Matthew Pinsent decided he wasn't going to settle for anything less than gold; and he went and got it. After a week of minimal British success, when I've had to put up with the Americantriumphalism of winning so much, I've just gone doolally!
I know some, particularly it seems on the left, dislike the nationalistic side of the Olympics and the undue focus on the success of some, finding it pretentious. I can't help but feel it's a great spectacle we should enjoy and revel in. Let's not expand the growing cynicism of the world into such a brilliant sporting spectacle.