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Saturday, 30 March, 2002, 20:10 GMT
Pinsent praises Oxford's tenacity
Triple Olympic gold medallist Matthew Pinsent gives his verdict on the Boat Race
Triple Olympic gold medallist and former Blue Matthew Pinsent gives his verdict on a sensational Oxford win in the University Boat Race.

What a classic - quite simply a brilliant race.

Cambridge threw down the gauntlet by picking the Middlesex station after winning the toss and that sent out a message to Oxford.

But Oxford replied with great tenacity that carried them through the race.

And they made the most of Cambridge's poor start.

A good start is vital, but the Light Blues gave away three-quarters of a length in the first minute after making a mistake in what seemed like the first stroke.

Cambridge fall behind Oxford in the closing stages
Oxford came round the outside in some style
In such a close race you can't afford to give away that much!

They fought back, as I thought they would, and coming around the Surrey bend in the lead they looked in control.

Even as they passed under Barnes Bridge they were still in the lead.

But then Oxford came and when their cox Peter Hackworth asked them for everything they gave that and more.

They did something we haven't seen for 50 years, rowing around the outside of the last bend to win.

Having held on throughout the race they were close enough to snatch victory when Cambridge gave up the ghost.

It was a superb achievement and they rowed Cambridge to a standstill.

As for Cambridge, their tactics would have been to hold on around the Surrey bend during the middle part of the race, before taking the line, as many expected, ahead of Oxford.

But to do that requires a huge amount of energy and effort and when their cox Ellie Griggs asked for everything, although they would have given their all, it simply wasn't enough.

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 ON THIS STORY
Triple Olympic gold medallist Matthew Pinsent
"Oxford were tenacious all through the race"
See also:

30 Mar 02 |  Boat Race 2002
Pinsent pinpoints winning ways
26 Mar 02 |  Boat Race 2002
Pinsent full of praise
Links to more Boat Race 2002 stories are at the foot of the page.

 

Links to more Boat Race 2002 stories

 
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