July 31, 2012 / 10:38 AM / 7 years ago

Memorable quotes from the 2012 London Olympics

REUTERS - Following are some of the fun and memorable quotes from the London Olympics:

Children watch the rowing event from an Olympic rings structure at Eton Dorney during the London 2012 Olympic Games July 31, 2012. REUTERS/Sergio Moraes

“Good evening, Mr Bond.”

- The 86-year-old Queen Elizabeth makes her film debut in a clip with James Bond star Daniel Craig shown as part of the quirky opening ceremony.

“Some of you will be baffled, I can guarantee it ... I hope you enjoy that kind of Liquorice Allsorts of things. Many of you won’t understand that reference, either.”

- Director Danny Boyle prepares international journalists for the opening ceremony.

“My results come from hard work and training and I would never use any banned drugs. The Chinese people have clean hands.”

- Chinese swimming sensation Ye Shiwen brushes aside doping suspicions raised after the 16-year-old set a world record to win the women’s 400-metre individual medley.

“Having been soundly beaten by Ariel since she was nine, I can certainly attest to her talent.”

- Billionaire and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is humbled by Ariel Hsing, the now 16-year-old U.S. women’s table tennis player who calls him “Uncle Bill”.

“The female body is a masterpiece. Everyone likes to look at the female body, especially in dynamic, athletic sport.”

- Natalie Cook, gold medallist at Sydney in 2000, defends bikinis in beach volleyball.

“It’s hard to know just how well it will turn out ... There are a few things that were disconcerting.”

- Visiting U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney kicks off a storm of indignation in London and is forced to quickly backtrack.

“The excitement is growing so much I think the Geiger counter of Olympo-mania is going to go ‘zoink’ off the scale.”

- London Mayor Boris Johnson is typically effusive in summing up the mood at an Olympics concert in London’s Hyde Park.

“There are many people who want to start rowing because I have come to the Olympic Games. We will start when I get back. We just have to wait for the boats to arrive.”

- Wildcard Niger rower Hamadou Djibo Issaka trained for just three months for the men’s single sculls, but never in his landlocked and mostly desert home country.

“Had I won the gold medal, I would have retired.”

- Roger Bannister, famous for running a mile in under four minutes in 1954, reveals he might have quit two years earlier had he not missed out on the medals at the Helsinki Olympics.

“I said ‘The medal is there, we have to take it’. I had a super feeling. I felt something big, but now I feel something even bigger, a big pain.”

- Injured Swiss cyclist Fabian Cancellara rues a crash in the men’s road race.

“She made it into the opening ceremony. She obviously should not have been there ... I can now confirm that she was a cast member. She was slightly over-excited.”

- London 2012 organising committee chairman Sebastian Coe is asked to explain how a woman breached security to gatecrash India’s athletes’ parade at the opening ceremony.

“We want to make sure that the right fighter has won.”

- Nicolas Messner, spokesman for the International Judo Federation, explains the first ever overruling of a flag decision by an Olympics judo referee and judges. Victory was awarded to, and then taken away from, South Korea’s Cho Jun-Ho in his men’s -66kg quarter-final.

“‘Inspire a generation’ is our motto. Not necessarily ‘Create a generation’, which is what they sometimes get up to in the Olympic village.”

- London Mayor Boris Johnson extols the “energy and enthusiasm” of the Games’ 10,000 athletes, to whom some 150,000 condoms have been distributed.

“I’m happy to say I’m the third in the world.”

- British golden girl Rebecca Adlington, unexpected double swimming gold medal winner at the Beijing Olympics four years ago, expresses her delight at winning a bronze before a cheering home crowd in London.


- The word organisers used on the Games’ official website to mean “closed to the public” was interpreted as “free to get in” by hundreds of archery fans who were turned away from a qualifying round at Lord’s Cricket Ground.

“It’s tough. It’s not ballet.”

- Six foot 5 inch (1.96 metre) water polo player Miho Boskovic clutches a bag of ice to his elbow as he talks to reporters after scoring three goals in Croatia’s opener against Greece.

“We were getting rather frustrated with Transport for London at one point and discussed internally trying to get on a bus with a coffin.”

- London funeral director John Cribb expresses frustration at the special road lanes set aside for Olympic vehicles.

Compiled by Jason Neely; Editing by Kevin Liffey and Matt Falloon

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