Memorable night for Europe as Ennis, Farah, Perkovic and Rutherford take gold | 05.08.2012
For Jessica Ennis (GBR), Sandra Perkovic (CRO), Mo Farah (GBR) and Greg Rutherford (GBR), these were golden moments.
Speaking about her historic performance over the two days, Ennis was jubilant: “I’m so shocked, I can’t believe it.
“After all the hard work and disappointment of Beijing, everyone has supported me so much. They said ‘go another four years’. I’ve done that.
“The crowd helped me, I can’t believe I’ve done it.”
Women’s discus gold went to Perkovic, who added to the European title she won in Helsinki and became Croatia’s first gold medallist in any event for eight years.
The 22-year-old from Zagreb clinched the gold medal with a third round throw of 69.11m, leaving second-placed Russian Darya Pishchalnikova, who threw 67.56, in her wake.
“It’s a great feeling, a dream come true. I’m so, so happy.
“I never imagined this moment, a national record, what a wonderful day.”
Farah became the first European to win the 10,000m Olympic gold since Italy’s Alberto Cova in 1984.
The 29-year-old ran a perfect race, making his move at the bell and then running away with the Olympic title in the finishing straight.
|Mo Farah celebrates his 10,000m gold with his
Like Ennis, Farah acknowledged the advantage of being in front of a roaring home crowd of 80,000 spectators: “People say there’s pressure being in a home Olympics, but I don’t think there’s pressure.
“They [the crowd] give you that lift, that buzz. You have to use the crowd and that made the difference.”
In the long jump Rutherford leapt furthest of all with a best effort of 8.31m, beating silver medallist Mitchell Watt (AUS) and Will Claye (USA), who jumped 8.16m and 8.12m respectively.
Speaking about his victory, an emotional Rutherford left us in no doubt that athletics is as much a personal journey as it is a physical one: “It’s the most amazing feeling in the world.
“Four years ago I had a terrible time, my grand dad died, but now I have an amazing team.
“My coach is incredible. I have the most incredible parents and a beautiful girlfriend. I can’t tell you how much they mean to me.
“I don’t think it’s sunk in properly. I knew I wanted to be an athlete and I knew I wanted to be Olympic champion. I might wake up in a minute.”