You, more than most, know that we’re a nation that loves its sport, last season alone over 14.5 million tickets were sold for premiership games. But I hope you also know that this outpouring of respect, and at times, love, for these athletes is as much for how they have behaved off as well as on the field, track or pitch.
Sure, the dedication, skill and sheer brilliance that they have all displayed is at the heart of their hero status, but it’s what they’ve done and how they have behaved after their events that has meant that they are worthy of every inch of the coverage, adulation and, no doubt, every penny of sponsorship and endorsement contracts that will follow.
Generous in victory and defeat, appreciative of the support they’ve received from coaches, family and friends whilst constantly acknowledging the public and the part they played in willing them all on to success. In short, their humility, eloquence and true sporting spirit has made so many people extremely proud to be British over these past two weeks. They have inspired a generation whilst underlining that it’s hard work that got them there and the chance of winning that kept them going.
Shortly, the baton passes back to you. You and your peers once again become our national sporting heroes; week in, week out. I just hope that you’re able to capture some of this affection and pride that the British public so clearly wants to give its sporting elite. But you have to earn it. Your wealth comes from these very people that have lined streets in the rain, packed out the Olympic park and cheered and clapped in every club, pub and living room in the country. These same people, that have so much passion, desperately want to be proud of the people they support, but that comes from making them proud of everything that you do and say, not just how you play football.
Don’t let them down.
Dean Barrett is managing director of Bastion who is enjoying all that GDCE and gamescom have to offer. Follow him on Twitter @deanbarrett or @BastionPR