Double joy for Great Britain’s rowers as France and Netherlands also claim gold
British rowers enjoyed a day of glory at the Olympic rowing regatta, with the men's four winning a fifth consecutive gold and Helen Glover and Heather Stanning successfully defending their crown in the women's pair.
The British men’s four, consisting of Alex Gregory, Mohamed Sbihi, George Nash and Constantine Louloudis, finished 1.83 seconds ahead of Australia and in doing so, they became the first NOC to win the event five times in a row.
"You imagine how this is going to feel but you can't fully realise it until it happens,” said a jubilant Sbihi.
“We feel bad for them,” said teammate Gregory of the Australian team. “We're mates with them. That's one of the hard things about sport; we're all after the same thing.”
TWO IN A ROW FOR TEAM GB
World and Olympic record holders Glover and Stanning led their nearest challengers by nearly four seconds at one point in the final of the women’s pair.
Despite a late push from New Zealand's Rebecca Scown and Genevieve Behrent, the British duo held on for a second successive gold.
"I just want to find our coach and family and friends because it's all (for) them. I want to say thank you,” said Glover.
"You put so much work into it and not everyone gets something to show for it. To get a silver medal is amazing,” added Kiwi Scown.
DUTCH TAKE WOMEN'S LIGHTWEIGHT DOUBLE SCULLS
In the first rowing final of the day, Netherlands duo Ilse Paulis and Maaike Head claimed gold in the lightweight women's double sculls ahead of Canada and China.
"I can't really believe what happened today, all week and all year really,” said Head.
“It's the purest form of happy,” added silver medalist Lindsay Jennerich. “This was 12 years in the making.”
FRANCE VICTORIOUS IN MEN'S LIGHTWEIGHT DOUBLE SCULLS
France hung on to win the men's lightweight double sculls in a tight finish that saw Ireland edge out Norway for silver.
"We are so happy. It's beautiful,” said Frenchman Pierre Houin.
"I suppose it's hard to know what it means because it's never been done before," added Paul O’Donovan who, along with brother Gary, claimed Ireland’s first rowing medal.