Smith says London Games might be his last as British gymnast revels in bronze medal
11:28 GMT, 31 July 2012
Great Britain gymnast Louis Smith is still revelling in Monday's Olympic bronze medal-winning success but revealed London might be his last Games.
The 23-year-old was part of the five-man team who wrote their place in the history books when they claimed Britain's first men's team Olympic medal in a century in a dramatic day at the North Greenwich Arena.
Smith, Max Whitlock, Daniel Purvis, Sam Oldham and Kristian Thomas scored a total of 271.711 as they produced a stunning team performance which exceeded all expectations ahead of the competition.
Can you believe it: Smith admits the London Games might be his last Olympics
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They had initially been awarded silver but a successful appeal by the Japanese team saw their marks increased and they moved to second, pushing Team GB down to third and leaving the Ukraine empty-handed by dropping to fourth as China won gold.
'We're very ecstatic about what we've done. We've overcome a lot of people thinking we couldn't do it,' Smith told ITV's Daybreak.
'We went out there, we had fun and we became Olympic bronze medallists.
'I don't know if I'll be there in four years' time, but I'm sure some of these young ones will be. In four years' time, I'll be 27 – I want kids by then.'
Balance: The British star helped Team GB achieve bronze during Monday's event
Oldham and Whitlock, both 19, along with 20-year-old Purvis look set to keep Britain's gymnastics revival growing apace.
A decade ago Britain were nowhere near the powerhouses of China, Japan and Russia and were ranked 23rd in the world. Now, they have won Olympic bronze, adding to the European team gold they claimed earlier this year.
Liverpool-born gymnast Purvis, who will compete in tomorrow's individual all-around event alongside Thomas, hailed his team-mates following their achievement.
In the medals: The British quintet celebrate bronze in Monday's team event
'There was always an outside chance of us getting a medal, especially with this team of boys – it's like a wolf pack really,' Purvis said.
'After this I think I'm just going to try and enjoy the all-around more.
Dan's the man: Purvis competes on the rings
'There's the possibility of a medal
there as well but now I've got one here it will hopefully affect my
performance in a better way and make me more relaxed.'
Oldham, reigning Youth Olympic high bar champion, who recovered from a broken collarbone and torn pectoral muscle suffered late last year to compete at the Games, believes this is only the start for success in British gymnastics.
'We've got incredible juniors coming up and hopefully we can do this in four, eight, 12 years time,' Oldham said.
'The support we've got from everyone in the audience, the British public. Hopefully it's raised the profile of the sport.
'I want to just enjoy this experience and try and take it all in because it's just unbelievable.'
Whitlock, who still has the pommel horse final to come with Smith, said
the team was thrilled with getting a medal of any colour.
'We're not annoyed about it. We had no expectations of getting a medal,' he said.
'We wanted to get out there and have fun, and we did.
'First of all we thought we had a silver medal, but silver or bronze medal – it doesn't matter really. We made history.'
Wolverhampton's Thomas admits it will take time for the enormity of what they have achieved to sink in.
He said: 'I'm hoping once the next week or so is out of the way we can just sit down, relax and take a moment just to think that we have just achieved one of the greatest things in history in our sport.'