End of an era as Great Britain lose Olympic men’s four final

·2 min read

Great Britain’s dominance of the men’s four at the Olympic Games came to an end in Tokyo.

The team of Oliver Cook, Matthew Rossiter, Rory Gibbs and Sholto Carnegie failed to win a medal in an event that had ended in British victory at the last five Games, stretching back to the turn of the millennium.

Here, the PA news agency looks back at Great Britain’s winning run in the competition.

Sydney 2000

Sydney Olympics British rowers
Pinsent, Foster, Redgrave and Cracknell celebrated in Sydney (John Giles/PA)

Steve Redgrave entered Olympic history by winning his fifth consecutive gold medal alongside Matthew Pinsent, Tim Foster and James Cracknell. A thrilling race saw the British crew win by less than half a second ahead of their closest rivals Italy at Penrith Lakes. It was Pinsent’s third successive Olympic gold and a first for Foster and Cracknell.

Athens 2004

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Pinsent claimed his fourth gold medal as Britain pipped world champions Canada. Pinsent and fellow Sydney champion James Cracknell, along with Ed Coode and Steve Williams, won by the narrowest of margins. The Canadian crew cranked up the pressure in the final stages but the GB four dug deep to edge them out in a photo finish by 0.08 seconds, while Italy took bronze.

Beijing 2008

No Pinsent no problem as Great Britain won again in Beijing
No Pinsent no problem as Great Britain won again in Beijing (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Williams was joined by Tom James, Pete Reed and Andrew Triggs Hodge as the Brits made it a hat-trick of golds in China. They came from a length down on the Australian crew with 500m remaining to triumph by half a length.

London 2012

Great Britain celebrate another win in London
Great Britain celebrate another win in London (Stephen Pond/PA)


Britain took gold four for the fourth successive Games as Reed, Triggs Hodge, James and Alex Gregory edged out Australia again at Eton Dorney. Roared on by a capacity home crowd, they blasted out of the blocks to lead after 500m and although Australia stayed within a third of a length with 500m to go, Triggs Hodge gave the call to push and the British stormed away.

Rio 2016

Rio Olympic Games 2016 – Day Seven
Sbihi, Nash, Gregory and Louloudis were victorious in Rio (Mike Egerton/PA Wire)

Gold number five for Great Britain arrived in style in Rio as Mohamed Sbihi, George Nash, Constantine Louloudis and 2012 winner Gregory edged out Australia once more. Australia pushed their rivals hard again but eventually trailed in 1.83 seconds behind to take another silver, with Italy claiming the bronze.

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