Wednesday, July 15, 1998 Published at 18:57 GMT 19:57 UK
Kipling captures World Cup spirit
Kipling's poem sums up the sporting spirit of the World Cup
On paper there was only one World Cup winner. But behind the glum expressions of all those who fell by the way-side is a winning spirit that is the mark of every sportsman.
The poem, which encapsulates the sporting spirit that made the World Cup a success, was accompanied by scenes of the tournament's highs and lows.
It set the BBC switchboard alight as viewers asked to see it again. It can be watched here on Real Video.
If, by Rudyard Kipling
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;
If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
A homage to humility, understanding and quiet self-assurance, If, has long been a poem of the people. In 1995, it was voted the nation's favourite poem in a poll conducted for National Poetry Day.
Kipling, a loyal supporter of the British Empire, wrote the poem with Dr Leander Starr Jameson in mind.
In late 1895 the British-born Dr Jameson led about 500 of his countrymen in a reckless and unsuccessful raid against the Boers, in southern Africa. What became known as the Jameson Raid was later cited as a major factor in bringing about the Boer War of 1899 to 1902.
But the story that swept across the UK was quite different. The British defeat was interpreted as a victory and Jameson portrayed as a daring hero.
Kipling saw the Afrikaners as aggressors, who were backward-looking people, opposed to progress and civilisation. He sided with his friend and countryman Jameson, believing his ambitions for the territory to be more honourable.