104 US Olympic medals x £100 = £10,400 for Kids Company…

…and Team USA’s generous donation has been welcomed by the charity’s founder, Camila Batmanghelidjh (pictured). But she says in The Times today that Britain remains bottom of the league of the wealthy world for the wellbeing of children:

Waiting for politicians to discover their own heroic spirits is Isabella, who was raped, aged 10, by her father; terror propelled her from the family home into the arms of paedophiles. She is a member of an ever-growing British team, girls whose average entry age into prostitution is 12. Isabella sits opposite me wearily describing how the deadness of her spirit helped her endure sex with more than 200 men in grotty brothels before she had reached the age of 13. While the Prime Minister promises that the outcome of the Olympics should be competitive sports in all schools, might he consider bequeathing an honourable legacy to another group of children? Abused children cannot pay lobbyists nor add a splash of glamour to a sponsor’s posters. But imagine Team GB’s catchphrase inspiring the protection of children: ‘Better Never Stops’.

(You can make a £5 donation to Kids Company on a UK mobile phone by texting KIDS HELP to 70700)

This is not an easy thing for an Australian to write. But it is now clear that the Brits have gone farther than merely thrashing Australia on the medals table. As awful as it is to admit, London has knocked Sydney off its pedestal as the best host of a modern Olympic Games.

The Europe correspondent of The AustralianPeter Wilson, who has covered the Olympics in Seoul, Barcelona, Atlanta, Sydney and Athens, pays homage to London 2012

Olympians who finished fourth

Keri-Anne Payne (Great Britain), women’s 10km swim, August 9, 2012

More Olympians who finished fourth

Twelve years on from the Sydney Olympics, the Australian effort has been reduced to rubble. In 2000 they won 58 medals, 16 of them gold. By 2004 it was 49 with 17 winners; and in Beijing 46 with 14 golds. In London they will struggle to get more than 35 medals and so far only five are gold. We might enjoy ribbing them, but let’s not avoid the question: how are we going to stop it happening to us?

Team GB know that funds will be cut after the London Games, says four-time gold medal winner Matthew Pinsent, so sport must be given higher priority in schools

Olympians who finished fourth

Dai Greene (Great Britain), men’s 400m final, August 6, 2012

More Olympians who finished fourth

A Sunday of close-seconds for Britain’s Olympians

While Saturday was a day of Olympic gold medal glory for Great Britain, Sunday was, perhaps, a day of very near misses. Team GB won two golds on the day but in four events were a whisker away from clinching the top spot.

Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson led the men’s Star class sailing until the eleventh and final race, where they needed to finish ahead of Brazil and secure sixth place at least to guarantee gold. They beat the Brazilians…but finished two seconds shy of sixth – a tiny margin in sailing terms – which meant Sweden took the gold.

On the pommel horse, Louis Smith, who was the last gymnast to compete, posted a score of 16.066 – the exact same as event leader Krisztian Berki. But Berki had been awarded a higher execution score despite completing an easier routine – so Smith had to settle for silver.

Andy Murray beat Roger Federer in straight sets in the men’s singles final to win gold, and an hour later was back out on court to compete in the mixed doubles final with Laura Robson. They won the first set, lost the second, then went down in a close final set tie break.

Coming out of the final bend in the women’s 400m final, Christine Ohuruogu was well out of medal contention. A powerful final 100m saw her close the gap on leader Sanya Richards-Ross to within a few paces…but it wasn’t enough. After the race, Ohuruogu said she felt she’d have won if the race was about three paces longer.

Follow all the action with The Times



WOW. Oh wow.

That’s SIX GOLD MEDALS in a record-breaking day for Great Britain. I am shaking and near tears (OK, I’ve already done the tears).

There’s nothing more to do but salute our athletes:

Rowing - men’s four: Andy Triggs Hodge, Pete Reed, Andy Gregory and Tom James
Rowing - women’s lightweight double sculls: Sophie Hosking and Katherine Copeland
Cycling - women’s team pursuitLaura Trott, Jo Rowsell and Dani King
Athletics - women’s heptathlon: Jessica Ennis
Athletics - men’s long jump: Greg Rutherford
Athletics - men’s 10,000m: Mo Farah

ANOTHER GOLD FOR GREAT BRITAIN!!! That’s number eight!

Victoria Pendleton, disappointed last night after being disqualified from the team sprint final, wins the women’s keirin!

GOLD NUMBER SEVEN FOR TEAM GB!!! (and a new world record!)

Ed Clancy, Geraint Thomas, Peter Kennaugh and Steve Burke win the men’s team pursuit in the velodrome!

…and Britain leapfrog France into fourth place in the medals table!

As Agnès Poirier, our French cultural commentator, wrote today:

Every French victory is a British defeat

And vice versa, Ms Poirier. Touché.


Katherine Grainger and Anna Watkins win the women’s double sculls final!

MORE GOLD!!! (and a new world record!)

Number three of the day, number five of the Games goes to the men’s sprint cyclists: Sir Chris Hoy, Jason Kenny and Philip Hindes!


Within seconds of Team GB’s win in the double trap, Tim Baillie and Etienne Stott win the Men’s Canoe Double. And Team GB’s David Florence and Richard Hounslow pick up the silver!


Peter Wilson wins the men’s double trap at the Royal Artillery Barracks!

..and there’s more…

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