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Quick Quotes - Tuesday Reps/Quarters/Semis
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Ed Hewitt, row2k.com
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Drysdale (NZL): 'The quarterfinals are a tricky stage. You don't want to do too much.'

Quotes from athletes who raced today in the Men's Single, Men's Four, Women's Double, Lightweight Women's Double, Lightweight Men's Double, Women's Single, Women's Eight, Men's Double, Light Men's Four, plus some bonus quotes from Sir Steve Redgrave.

Men's Single

James FRASER-MACKENZIE (ZIM) after coming third in the second semifinal E/F of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

James FRASER-MACKENZIE (ZIM)

On the race:
"It was the best I've had. The race plan was OK but I could work more on the last bit.

On his health:
"I've been sick for the last week with a head cold and sore throat, and it really saps the energy out of you."

"My first two races weren't too good but after recovering from the head cold I'm getting better."

On conditions and technique:
"I prefer racing with a tailwind but today there was a slight headwind. I still handled it quite well and my technique was quite good."

On what's next:
"I'm going to rest and visit my family who are here in England. I'm going to Henley."

"Leander (Club, where he trains) have been amazing and they've supported me."

Hamadou DJIBO ISSAKA (NIG) after finishing fourth and last behind Hong Kong China, Peru and El Salvador in the first semifinal E/F of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Hamadou DJIBO ISSAKA (NIG)

On his background in rowing:
"In December (2011), I rowed in Tunisia, Belgium and Egypt (but I wasn't rowing in a proper racing shell). I have been rowing (in a proper boat) for three months."

On the attention he's getting:
"I'm very happy with the attention I'm getting. It gives me a lot of courage."

On which of his races at the London 2012 Olympics he liked best:
"The first one."

On whether his technique has improved:
"I have no technique. (laughs) I've done only three months (of proper training) so I will get more technique."

On how he spends his time in Niger:
"Swimming and gardening. And I have a family."

On his original sport of swimming:
"I was a 50m freestyle swimmer and my best time was 27 seconds."

On his early experiences as a rower:
"
When I first got into a rowing boat I fell into the water. But as I am a good swimmer, so it was no problem."

On his technique:
"
I don't know any techniques as I have only been rowing for three months. I saw it on TV but I hadn't seen it in real life until I visited Tunisia."

On his 2,000m experience:
"I have rowed 2000m around six or seven times - my best time was 8:25."

On whether he gets lonely being so far back in a race:
"
I'm used to it."

On the Eton Dorney spectators:
"It is fantastic to see the reaction of the crowd. The reception they give me helps me to finish the race."

On the Olympic Opening Ceremony:
"The opening ceremony was amazing and it was wonderful to see all the other countries. It is something I'll never forget."

WANG Ming-Hui (TPE) after winning the second semifinal E/F of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

WANG Ming-Hui (TPE)

On his performance at the Olympic Games:
"I'm disappointed with this performance. The size of my boat is not really good, it's too big for me, that's why it was hard to race here. I wanted to be in the top 18 as I was second at the Asian Games in 2010."

On the difficulties he has faced:
"My family conditions are not too good, but now I have better possibilities than before."

On the future:
"Though I'm disappointed, I'll continue rowing and to teach rowing as well."

SO Sau Wah (HKG) after winning the first semifinal E/F of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday. He races again in the E final on Friday.

SO Sau Wah (HKG)

On his Olympic Games experience:
"This is my third Olympics. I used to row in lightweight doubles, but now I had to switch to single sculls."

On his plans for the future:
"Before this Olympic Games I didn't have a specific goal, just wanted to see on what level I am."

"Maybe I'll not continue rowing, but my life will be associated with rowing, I'll teach others how to row."

Mindaugas GRISKONIS (LTU) after finishing third in his men's single sculls quarterfinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday and qualifying for the semifinals.

Mindaugas GRISKONIS (LTU):

On the race:
"My first day of racing was very bad but I feel much better today - I'm feeling good now."

On his game plan for the semifinal:
"
I just plan to do my best. Everybody is my rival out there."

On what he will do next:
"I'm wet and cold. I must change my clothes."

Lassi KARONEN (SWE) after winning his quarterfinal of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Lassi KARONEN (SWE)

On leading after the first 500 metres:
"I'm a bit surprised. I thought some of my opponents would start a little bit harder. It felt good to have the lead. I didn't feel like I put too much effort in the first 500 so I maintained my tactics and followed through the whole race."

On the final:
"I just want to get into the top three."

Sawarn SINGH (IND) after failing to qualify for the men's single sculls semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Sawarn SINGH (IND)

On failing to qualify:
"I am not very disappointed because I have improved on my time and I hope to improve my performance in the future. I have only been rowing for three years, so I am proud to be India's top rower and to be an Olympian."

On the race and plans for the future:
"I did very well in the first 1000 metres and now I must concentrate on improving my performance in the second 1000m of a race."

Santiago FERNANDEZ (ARG) after qualifying for the semifinal of the men's single sculls by finishing second in the quarterfinal behind Lassi KARONEN (SWE) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Santiago FERNANDEZ (ARG)

On the result:
"I am very happy. I came here to be in the first 10, and I think it's a big step today. I'm happy with that."

On his expectations for the semifinal:
"To do my best and see what happens. I will be happy when I pass the finish line."

On his rivals:
"New Zealand (Mahe DRYSDALE) and the Czech Republic (Ondrej SYNEK) are the most strong."

New Zealand rower Mahe DRYSDALE after winning his men's single sculls quarterfinal ahead of Tim MAEYENS (BEL) and Mindaugas GRISKONIS (LTU) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Mahe DRYSDALE (NZL)

On how the race went:
"Today was OK. It was a solid race and I did what I needed to do. Today was not the best ever row. The quarterfinals are a tricky stage. You don't want to do too much. The semi is tomorrow. You want to conserve energy."

"The semis at the Olympic Games are a horrible place to be. Once that's out of the way, you can relax and enjoy the final."

On Tim MAEYENS (BEL) testing him in the final stages of the race:
"He was having a little go. In a quarterfinal you try to do the least you can. You hope that they know they're beaten and give up. Tim's a fighter. It's good to have a little fight."

On Ondrej SYNEK's (CZE) quarterfinal victory:
"It looked like SYNEK was fairly dominant. He continues to be the man to beat."

On how he has reacted to recent stomach problems:
"I've been eating what everyone else has been eating, so hopefully if I go down, everyone else does."

Henrik STEPHANSEN (DEN) after failing to qualify for the men's single sculls semifinal by coming fourth in his quarterfinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Henrik STEPHANSEN (DEN)

On the race:
"I am disappointed that I didn't qualify as I thought I had a really good chance, but the other guys were just too fast and they did the job better than me. But I had a great race and did the best I could."

On plans for the future:
"First of all I must get through the C/D semifinal and then the C final. After that I'll be going for the world championships in the lightweight single sculls class."

Marcel HACKER (GER) after coming second behind Alan CAMPBELL (GBR) in the quarterfinals of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Marcel HACKER (GER)

On his plans for the rest of the day:
"I'm going to relax, recover, sleep, eat and watch the rowing."

On his plans for the semifinal:
"I'll follow my own race plan and my coach's. I don't look for what the others are doing."

Ondrej SYNEK (CZE) after winning his men's single sculls quarterfinal ahead of Angel FOURNIER RODRIGUEZ (CUB) and Olaf TUFTE (NOR) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Ondrej SYNEK (CZE)

On the race:
"The race was very good, but more difficult than I expected as the Cuba and Denmark guys were right behind me and they were very strong."

On his tactics for the semifinal:
"I will do my best as I really want to get to the final. But we'll just have to see what happens."

Alan CAMPBELL (GBR) after winning his quarterfinal of the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Alan CAMPBELL (GBR)

On how he feels after his race:
"Well, I'm peeing like a racehorse right now."

On how confident he is that he can win gold:
"I have to keep a lid on it (my excitement). When it comes to the final, the gloves are off."

On the noise and excitment of the crowd:
"Well they've talked about there being empty seats at other venues, that's because everyone's here. They've been like the Willy Wonka golden tickets - I wish I was a rockstar and could get more of my friends and family backstage passes."

On his plans for after the Olympic Games:
"All I know is that there's no training next week and I get to see my wife and spend the night at home. I'm hugely excited."

Olaf TUFTE (NOR) after qualifying for the semifinal of the men's single sculls by coming in third behind Ondrej SYNEK (CZE) and Angel FOURNIER RODRIGUEZ (CUB) in his quarterfinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Olaf TUFTE (NOR)

On his race:
"It was a better race (than in the heats). I let the boat run better."

On finishing close to Ondrej SYNEK (CZE) and Angel FOURNIER RODRIGUEZ (CUB):
"I don't think Ondrej used everything. I'm (pleasantly) surprised to be so close to Angel."

On if there's more in the tank:
"Who knows?" (Grins)

Men's Four

Miljan VUKOVIC (SRB) on winning the repechage of the men's four and qualifying for the semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Miljan VUKOVIC (SRB)

On being ahead the whole race:
"We always want to be first. This is simple. This race is better than the first. Next race better. I hope to get to the final."

Tyson WILLIAMS/Sean O'NEILL (NZL) after qualifying for the men's four semifinal in second place at Eton Dorney on Tuesday

Tyson WILLIAMS (NZL)

On the race: 
"We made it through, which is what we were after. We had a better start than yesterday, but it's the first time for a lot of us at the Olympics. Our main purpose today was to squeeze through the middle. We learned a lot from yesterday."

On prospects for the semifinal:
"We've got a bit more in the tank, a bit more to give."

Sean O'NEILL (NZL)

On the race:
"We pushed pretty hard in the third 500m and we knew everyone was going to sprint like crazy and your life is on the line. We did it early and just hung on, and it worked."

On his hopes compared to previous Olympics and world championships:
"Looking back we were very close in those races. We were always in the harder and faster heats so it would be nice not to have the 'if onlys' after this regatta and get into the final."

On prospects for the semifinal and tactics:
"We can make the final. We're building, and we must just keep building again for Thursday (the semifinal) - that's all you can really do. We're all good rowers but we haven't quite nailed it in the four yet, but when we do we'll be up there. It's all about confidence."

Women's Double

ZHU Weiwei (CHN) after she and teammate WANG Min (CHN) won the repechage of the women's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday to qualify for Friday's final.

ZHU Weiwei (CHN)

On their Olympic experience:
"This is our first Olympics. So far we are satisfied. Before the Olympic Games, we wanted to go as far as we can go (in the tournament). We are probably not as good as strong opponents such as Great Britain."

"We were first in the repechage, and we will do the best we can (in the final)."

On filling the shoes of the Chinese women's double sculls who were world champions in 2007 but disappointed at Beijing 2008:
"In Beijing, two other rowers raced the double sculls. This time it is us. We have good prospects for the future."

Margot SHUMWAY/Sarah TROWBRIDGE (USA) after coming second in the repechage of women's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday, behind WANG Min/ZHU Weiwei (CHN) and ahead of Lenka ANTOSOVA/Jitka ANTOSOVA (CZE), and qualifying for the final.

Margot SHUMWAY (USA)

On problems with the starting system before the race:
"We had a great start and the starting system failed, and we didn't know if we had a false start. There was a beep. We didn't stop, we just kept going, they called us back and had a flag start. Then we did a solid start and got in our rhythm."

On the race:
"We got to the 1,250 metre mark. I called a move. In the last 500m I just said 'move'. It wasn't pretty but at the end it paid off. The Czechs rowed an awesome race and they made us a better crew."

On her birthday, 2 August:
"Today's race is a great birthday present but I also expect to celebrate with a beer (on her birthday)."

Sarah TROWBRIDGE (USA)

On competing with winners WANG/ZHU:
"It was about our race plan, me and Margot working together as one. Then we could feel that slight speed loss from China and it put us into instinct mode and we went in to the kill."

Inge JANSSEN (NED) after she and Elisabeth (Ellen) HOGERWERF (NED) came fifth in their repechage of the women's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday. They will have to race in the B final.

Inge JANSSEN (NED)

On the issues with the start system that happened just before the race:
"The start system was broken. It kept saying that there was a false start, even though I'm sure that our first start was good. They tested the system a second time, without us going away from the blocks, and it still said that there was a false start."

"Afterwards, they decided to use the flag instead. It was hard to see the flag because we were in one of the outer lanes. It was taking so long, and I thought I could straighten the boat in the crosswind, but then all of the sudden the start was given. We messed up the start because of that. We were the dumb guys who fell for that one."

On losing out on one of the two qualifying slots:
"It's a shame. We wouldn't have beat the United States crew (who took the second and last qualifying spot for the A final), but we could have done better. Apparently, we're good enough to beat the Czechs (based on the heat results). Our speed is much better than yesterday (in the heat). We really caught up with Ukraine and Germany at the end of the race."

Lightweight Women's Double

Atsumi FUKUMOTO (JPN) after coming third in the first repechage of the lightweight women's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday and qualifying for the final between Netherlands and New Zealand.

Atsumi FUKUMOTO (JPN)

On racing the world's best time holders, New Zealand:
"We are very glad to compete with New Zealand, it was a very nice experience for us. Next time we want to win."

Julie NICHOLS after winning the second repechage of lightweight women's double sculls to qualify for the semifinals at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Julie NICHOLS (USA)

On coming first:
"Very excited to be at the next step. We're still on track."

On her feelings at the start line:
"We race as we always race. Try not to be overwhelmed. No different (to usual), stay within ourselves and do what we do."

Julia EDWARD (NZL) after finishing second to Netherlands in the first repechage of the lightweight women's double sculls with partner Louise AYLING (NZL) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Julia EDWARD (NZL)

On qualifying for the semifinal through the repechage:
"It was relaxed, comfortable. We just kept our rating low, kept it comfortable. We worked on a few things we may not have done so well in the heat."

On a slow start to the Olympic Games:
"We did the same in Munich (at the third world cup of 2012) so we're not too worried about it. We know we'll have to really work on it together so we're going to put everything into it."

Rianne SIGMOND (NED) and Maaike HEAD (NED) after winning their repechage of the lightweight women's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Rianne SIGMOND (NED)

On whether the race was a row-over (an easy win):
"We always put pressure on ourselves. You want to do better than the first race. Obviously we want to win. It might have been a row-over on paper, but it's always hard."

On their chances in the semifinal:
"It's what we always say: all the crews have good days and bad days. If we have good day, we'll be right up there with the rest of them."

"Greece is supreme. But you never know. Maybe it'll be just like New Zealand in Munich (at the last world cup of the season). We beat them in the heat, and they rowed eight seconds faster in the final (and went on to win)."

Maaike HEAD (NED)

On the repechage compared to their heat:
"We watched the video of our race and compared it to some of our training videos from the lead up to London. While we were initially happy with our row in the heat, comparing the videos showed us that we could do much better. We told ourselves that we didn't want the rowing in the training to be the best rowing we've done this year."

On who they don't like to face in the semifinal:
"It's really hard. We didn't expect Australia to be good, but they've been doing really well. We just need to focus on ourselves."

On their fingernails painted with the red, white and blue of the Netherlands flag:
"We didn't do it ourselves. There's a nail parlour in the Olympic village and you can book an appointment with them. They're actually stickers, it's not nail polish. And if they fall off, we'll just go back. It's not like we have something better to do - we usually sit around all day and wait. Yeah, you have to book yourself an appointment, because they're really popular. And they like us, because they follow us on Twitter."

"My toenails are not red, white and blue. They're orange. They've been orange for four years."

Lindsay Jennerich (CAN)

"Obviously we wanted to go out and win the rep, but what we have to take home with us is recognizing that as we are moving through the regatta, we are improving immensely. The semi is going to be an extremely tough race... we'll have to race that semi like it's a final."

Lightweight Men's Double

Comments from Rodolfo COLLAZO TOURN (URU) after coming fifth in the first repechage of the lightweight men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Rodolfo COLLAZO TOURN (URU)

On the race plan:  
"We are quite tired. We hoped to be in the first two, but it wasn't to be. But that was always our plan. To be in the first two."

On what went wrong:
"We have realised our level - nothing we could do. We were outclassed. Normally we do really well in world cups, but we were outshone today."

Hungary coach Balazs SKEKELY (HUN) after Zsolt HIRLING/Tamas VARGA (HUN) qualified for the lightweight men's double sculls semifinals by coming second in Tuesday's repechage at Eton Dorney.

Balazs SKEKELY (HUN)

On the race:
"This race was perfectly built up. The Canadians chose a suicide tactic: they had such a first 500 metres it was obvious it wasn't possible to continue (like that). None of the other crews went like that."

"Whenever the Australians tried to catch them (HIRLING/VARGA) they perfectly defended themselves. At the end the distance between them was even bigger."

On his crew's preparation for the race:
"Their heat used a lot of energy, but they were able to recover from it. They are really professional athletes."

On the future of the crew:
"We don't know what will happen. For these two guys this is really a gift. After three years of (HIRLING's) retirement from the sport, they began to row together again less than a year ago. They have expectations, they want to give their maximum here."

On the performance of Hungarian men's pair Domonkos SZELL/Bela SIMON, who were eliminated from the competition yesterday:
"They are a relatively new crew. In eight weeks we shouldn't expect a miracle, as this is the technically most difficult boat class. The athletes did their best, finishing 0.47 seconds behind the USA and 1.2 seconds behind the European championship bronze medallists from Serbia is not a shame. The world's best 13 crews are here."

Douglas VANDOR (CAN) after failing to make the semifinals in the lightweight men's double sculls at Eton Dorney, finishing fourth in the first repechage on Tuesday.

DOUGLAS VANDOR (CAN)

On his reaction to being out of the running for a medal:
"It sucks but life goes on. It's still so fresh right now. As long as you gave your best... the fact that I'm here and rowing is still great."

On his future in rowing:
"It's possible that this'll be my last regatta but I'm not making any decisions right now."

On his future after he retires from rowing:
"I'm not sure if I'll specialize in that or not (experimental surgery, in which he has a degree). I really wanna be a chef, so if you know any top chefs in Canada who are looking for an apprentice, let me know."

“We had a sluggish start in the heat, so we really wanted to come out firing in the rep. That's what we did, but we stumbled in the last 500m and when the other crew started coming through us we weren't able to respond, and ended up with a fourth-place result."

Daisaku TAKEDA (JPN) after coming in second behind Cuba in the repechage of the lightweight men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Daisaku TAKEDA (JAP)

On whether or not he was happy with the result:
"Yes, a little happy. (By getting into the semifinal) we have improved our result from Beijing. We had some problems with the heat. Our technique was better in this race, but we still need to improve. Our blades are going in too deep. But our horizontal drive is getting better."

On being a rowing veteran already and the possibility of racing in Rio 2016:
"I will try. It depends on my wife. She is here in London with my children. We will talk about Rio. After London we will talk about the future. My goal is a (happy) life and I enjoy rowing."

"Maybe in Rio it will be more sunny."

On Japanese rowing:
"In these games, we have three boats. This is my fifth Games, it's his (teammate Kazushige URA, JPN) fourth, the lightweight double's fourth (Games). Japan needs talents. I hope to inspire them."

On judoka Riki NAKAYA (JAP):
"Yesterday he got a silver. We hoped that he would get a gold. We respect each other a lot."

Women's Single

Soulmaz ABBASIAZAD (IRI) after finishing last in quarterfinal one of the women's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Soulmaz ABBASIAZAD (IRI)

On the competition:
"It was a good experience to row between a lot of big, famous athletes. I liked, and wished I was better. I would have liked to go to the Olympics when I was more strong and experienced."

On the start:
"The start was the most difficult part and I think the finish because I saw the others (ahead of me)."

On women in rowing and her own future:
"I just say to other women, become successful and get the best result. I hope I can come again to race and in the next Olympics I hope to be better."

On training conditions in Iran:
"We just have a 1,000m course on a lake. We practise there and at other times go to courses in other countries."

Frida SVENSSON (SWE) after qualifying for the semifinals of the women's single sculls by coming third behind Miroslava KNAPKOVA (CZE) and Genevra STONE (USA) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Frida SVENSSON (SWE)

On her third Olympic Games:
"There should be more pressure but I should be more experienced so I'm hoping for better this time around. But it's just another race, another regatta."

On being part of a small team:
"There's just me, Lassi (KARONEN, SWE) and two coaches, but I'm used to it being the four of us travelling the world, going to tournaments."

USA rower Genevra STONE after she finished second in her women's single sculls quarterfinal, behind Miroslava KNAPKOVA (CZE) and ahead of Frida SVENSSON (SWE), to qualify for Thursday's semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Genevra STONE (USA)

On her performance:
"It wasn't the best start. That tends to be my race pattern but not my race plan."

"I was in a bad position in the first 500 (metres). At 1,000 I took another glance and misjudged who was who. So for the next 500m I needed to beat that girl. At the next 500m (1,500m) I saw it was Frida (SVENSSON, SWE) and Sanita (PUSPURE, IRL) was behind. I tried to move the boat effectively and more aggressively."

"It's great, everyone out there is working their guts out. Sanita really went out hard. Cuba (Yariulvis COBAS) was up on me at the first 500."

On the remainder of the regatta:
"
I hope I can do well on Thursday and on Saturday (in the final)."

Kim CROW (AUS) after winning her quarterfinal of the women's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Kim CROW (AUS)

On what to do before the next race:
"I just want to go down the street, get some coffee and pretend I'm a normal person."

On racing both the single and double sculls at the Olympic Games:
"I've trained to do it. In four years I haven't missed a solitary training session, so I'm in good shape."

"In some ways I'm three races down, which means I'm halfway there. I'm happy to be in this place at this time."

Fie Udby ERICHSEN (DEN) on finishing second in her quarterfinal of the women's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Fie Udby ERICHSEN (DEN)

On how happy she is with her performance:
"The race went as planned. I didn't start as fast as I can, but I was at the front, so I kept the same pace as Ekaterina (KARSTEN, BLR). It was an even pace all the way through. Exactly as planned. I am really happy. I have only been rowing for a couple of years, so this is everything I hoped for."

Nataliya MUSTAFAYEVA (AZE) after finishing third in the women's single sculls quarterfinal four behind Fie Udby ERICHSEN (DEN) and Ekaterina KARSTEN (BLR) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Nataliya MUSTAFAYEVA (AZE)

On the difficulties arising during the race:
"There was a sidewind, so the boat always tried to twist. I had to row harder with my right hand, so now my muscles are in pain."

On the future:
"My result is not too great, but I hope that I can make it into the final A. Either way, if I'll be in final B, I'll take part in that race too, as this is a great competition."

Micheen THORNYCROFT (ZIM) on coming fourth in her quarterfinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday, taking her out of contention for a medal.

Micheen THORNYCROFT (ZIM)

On her boat not getting to Eton Dorney on time and the good sportsmanship shown by her rivals:
"My boat didn't arrive for five days but Brazil stepped in and lent me a boat - you know, my competitor. I am just so thrilled to be here and I feel so well-connected now having been among these athletes."

On her attitude to competing compared to larger countries:
"There's a lot of athletes who have forgotten how to have fun and why we do this. If you choose to do it, you've gotta enjoy the ride. It's not about work and endurance all the time."

On her future after the Games:
"It might feel like the Olympics is the end, but for me it's the beginning. See you at Rio 2016."

Ekaterina KARSTEN (BLR) after coming in second behind Fie Udby ERICHSEN (DEN) in the quarterfinal of the women's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Ekaterina KARSTEN (BLR)

On her injured rib:
"I am in less pain right now than I was in the heat. I hope it will be more healed in the semifinal."

On being surprised by Fie Udby ERICHSEN (DEN):
"I am little bit surprised. She is better than she was in Munich (at the world cup when KARSTEN won and ERICHSEN came in fourth)."

ZHANG Xiuyun (CHN) after winning her quarterfinal of the women's single sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

ZHANG Xiuyun (CHN)

On winning the race:
"
That was pretty hard, I never thought that it would have been like that. I thought that it would be relatively calm, but it was really tough."

"I don’t know why I didn’t perform as well today, there could be lots of reasons. Over the years I’ve rowed in many different climates but I’ve never encountered the English climate."

"I don’t really have any way of comparing my quarterfinal to the others, you can only really compare within your own."

On competing at the Olympic Games:
"
I might do (Rio) 2016. Beijing (2008) had its own style, there were big differences. I was really happy to compete there in my home Games."

Women's Eight

coxswain Caroline O'CONNOR (GBR) after the Great Britain women's eight finished fourth in the repechage at Eton Dorney on Tuesday and qualified for Thursday's final.

Caroline O'CONNOR (GBR)

On the effect of the crowd on her ability to communicate with the team:
"When the noise hits you in the last 500 (metres) it is just like 'wow'. You're not only competing with five other coxes, but the crowd as well. "

On their chances in the final after qualifying through the repechage:
"Once you're in the final, anyone can contend, there's no reason why it's not possible now that we're there."

Great Britain rowers Jessica EDDIE/Lindsey MAGUIRE/Louisa REEVE after the team finished fourth in the women's eight repechage at Eton Dorney on Tuesday, qualifying for the final.

Jessica EDDIE (GBR)

On the performance:
"It was OK. We got to the final and it's an improvement on our racing in our heat. But we still need to move on massively if we're going to do better in the next round. We had a much better start than we usually do, but we need to get a better rhythm in the middle of the race, which is something we did quite well in the heat."

On their prospects in the final:
"We're not worried. We can do it. We've done it before, in pressurised situations, at world cups. We're world rowing bronze medallists, so we've done it, we just need to deliver it. We're all really good athletes, and we're on the world stage, but we're not delivering and it's a little frustrating."

"There is no one here in that race that we've not beaten. We just need to keep our heads in. The crews who are going to medal in two day's time are the ones who can turn things around, who can get to the start line on Thursday with the confidence and belief they can do it, and we really need to draw that into ourselves."

On technique:
"Rowing is so aggressive and physical, but if you've not got the technical side right, you can pull as hard as you want on the handle but you won't be very fast. We need to sort that aspect of our rowing out. We're very talented physical athletes, we're very strong - as strong as any other women's team - but we just need to put it into practice."

Lindsey MAGUIRE (GBR)

On the USA team:
"Yes, they might be the favourites and they are a really strong team. But we know what we can do on our best day, and you can't believe that anyone is unbeatable. We have to do absolutely our best race, but we haven't done that yet. We just have to step up and do it in the final when it counts."

On rivalry between Britain's men's and women's eights:
"No, I don't think so. Obviously there is a lot of banter between the boys and the girls. They tell us they train harder than we do, but they don't, obviously. I'd love to see them do really well and we know they'd love to see us do really well also."

Louisa REEVE (GBR)

On reaching the final:
"Very happy to be in the final. It's my second Olympics though and that's not going to be enough. We want to get a medal."

"We made it. It's ticking a box to get it right. We're not afraid of anyone. There are some strong teams out there."

On the performance:
"We did better than the heat. There are some things to improve on. Our rhythm was not as good as we'd hoped."

Jacobine VEENHOVEN (NED) after beating Romania to win the repechage of the women's eight at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Jacobine VEENHOVEN (NED)

On the race:
"It wasn't pretty, but we went faster (than in the heat). We need to keep going like this. We were a lot more aggressive, we kept attacking every stroke."

On being aware of the Romanian eight in the lane next to them:
"You know they're holding on, but I always felt we were in control. You feel yourself thinking 'we are going to break them', and although it doesn't happen, you never lose confidence. At the end it got close."

On the noise the crowd makes:
"It was a lot more noise than in the heat. But that's probably because the Brits (Great Britain) were with us in this repechage. I kept thinking 'everyone is cheering for me, not for the Brits'."

On the importance of getting a good result because of the influence the weather can have:
"The main thing is that you want to win for yourself. But we did talk about the importance of winning the race because of the weather."

On sister-in-law Marieke VEENHOVEN (NED) being called up as a spare to the Dutch hockey team at the last moment:
"It's really funny. She was going to come over to see me race, but obviously she can't right now. She's on the pitch every day and does her training. But it's really great for her. My brother is faithfully supporting me right now, but next week he'll sit in the hockey tribune. I will go out to watch the hockey next week as well."

Phoebe STANLEY (AUS) after the Australian women's eight finished third in the repechage at Eton Dorney on Tuesday behind Netherlands and Romania.

Phoebe STANLEY (AUS)

On their race strategy:
"We did a really good job in sticking to the race plan. Now we just have to get into the final and give it something special, and hopefully we can get on the podium."

On the conditions on the lake:
"As much as we don't want to talk about favourable conditions, the wind was a cross today, so we are hoping to handle that a little bit better next time. But we just have to see what is thrown at us on the day and handle it as best as we can."

On the crowds at Eton Dorney:
"It's hard for our bow girls to home in our our coxswain with the amount of noise, but it's an amazing experience and we're using it to the best of our ability to get us up and move us to the line."

On her Olympic experience:
"The journey has been an enriching one. I've met some amazing girls who I can call some of my best friends. We've had a great time and we're going to lay it all out there in the final and have no regrets."

Men's Double

Joseph SULLIVAN (NZL) on coming second behind Argentina in the first semifinal of the men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Joseph SULLIVAN (NZL)

On whether the very tight finish was part of the race plan:
"It wasn't part of the plan. We wanted to get out better than that. The semifinal is harder than the final. All the crews have nothing to lose and push (right) out. It's really the hardest race I've ever done in my life."

On Australia and Germany being out of the final:
"You expect the reigning Olympic champions and world champions to be there. They're gone. It's a shock. These people are always there."

On the success of the Argentinians, who won the semifinal:
"They've always been around. When they get it right, they fly. Like me and Nathan (COHEN, NZL), when you go well together, you get it right. We're always confident when we start. Nathan was calling as we went through the last 500 (metres) and we did the best we could. We'd been through all the scenarios. (This was) the biggest finish we've ever had to do."

Luka SPIK (SLO) after winning the second semifinal of the men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Luka SPIK (SLO)

On his relationship as a team with Iztok COP (SLO):
"We have been together a long time. Sometimes it is difficult and hard. It is like being primitive and you don't have to think. We lose sometimes but not today."

When asked if it is like being a married couple:
"Yes."

Saulius RITTER (LTU) after qualifying for the final of the men's double sculls with pair Rolandas MASCINSKAS (LTU) by coming second in the semifinal behind Slovenia at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Saulius RITTER (LTU)

On their achievement:
"We wanted to get into the final tomorrow (Wednesday), it was our biggest goal. We will try to do our best rowing and what happens, happens. We wouldn't like to let down our country."

On the crowd:
"The crowd here is astonishing for Great Britain, overwhelming. It's the first time in my life I've seen these kinds of crowds anywhere."

On improving from last year's world championships, where they were 10th overall:
"It was practically the last qualifying place for the Olympics and we weren't very strongly prepared looking at it from our point of view, but we made our best rowing."

Kjetil BORCH (NOR) after finishing fourth in the semifinals of the men's double sculls with partner Nils Jakob HOFF (NOR)and not making the A final, at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Kjetil BORCH (NOR)

On what went wrong to finish fourth and not make the A final:
"We didn't sprint, from the last 600 metres we just bought up (ran out of gas). Now we need to do our best to get results and take it in with our coach."

Julien BAHAIN/Cedric BERREST (FRA) after missing out on the final of the men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Cedric BERREST (FRA)

On what went wrong with the race:
"The problem is we don't know what went wrong. We had good preparation. We felt well physically. We've been in the middle the last five years. We were expecting better. It's what sport's all about. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don't. I am gutted."

Julien BAHAIN (FRA)

On describing the race:
"Somehow we missed the first part. The start. It's difficult to explain why and how that happened. The start didn't go well. Then we are a length and a half behind and we spend time catching up."

On describing his feelings at not making the final:
"Disappointed. Frustrated. We trained for four years for this. Put everything into it. We live for that (the final) and everything collapses at the end. We are lucky we have good friends and family to support us because the rest of the world won't. When you are expecting to get something and you get nothing, they forget you."

Sam TOWNSEND (GBR) after coming third in the men's double sculls semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday and qualifying for Thursday's final.

Sam TOWNSEND (GBR)

On his fiancee Natasha PAGE's (GBR) illness and its effects on his training:
"She had some pretty bad blood clots in November so for a while my job was to care for her, not to go on the ergo, so my training was pushed to the side for a bit. Hopefully we can bring some medals to the wedding."

On hearing the commentary for PAGE's women's eights race from inside the Great Britain team tent before his own race:
"I was lying in the tent, I wasn't intending to hear it but the commentary was pretty loud. I was very pleased for her but I tried not to get too emotionally attached before my own race."

On his plans for the next few days before the final:
"We definitely need to switch off now this evening, it's a long time between the races and you can start to think too much about stuff - you know, about how you started 10 years ago in this sport and then it all comes down to this 6.5 minute race. You can't let it cripple you."

On the crowd:
"From the 800-metre mark the crowds start to get deeper at the sides and the noise starts cranking up and to be honest the boat felt like it was doing the same thing, being pushed forward by the noise."

On a comment by Australian women's quadruple sculls coach, Jason LANE (AUS), that the British crowd are hampering Australia's chances at getting a medal by cheering so loudly that the crew cannot concentrate:
"Well it is a wall of noise but it's not like they're chanting 'team GB', it's just noise so it helps us all, I'm loving it, I want more, I don't want it to stop." 

Stephan KRUEGER (GER) after he and crewmate Eric KNITTEL (GER) finished in fourth place in the semifinal of the men's double sculls at Eton Dorney on Tuesday. KRUEGER/KNITTEL will now have to race the B final.

Stephan KRUEGER (GER)

On their race:
"I'm actually quite (happy) with the race. It was not that bad. We couldn't do much better."

"It is a tough field. Anything can happen. Argentina made the final and Norway didn't."

On the development of the race after the 1,000 metre mark:
"As usual, everything was on one line. Then Italy and Slovenia went away and we couldn't follow."

David CRAWSHAY (AUS) after he and teammate Scott BRENNAN (AUS), the 2008 Olympic champions, finished fifth in their men's double sculls semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday and failed to qualify for the final.

David CRAWSHAY (AUS)

On their race:
"Not much went wrong. We did what we needed to do. We put it up in the first five (hundred metres) which we needed. We were in a really good position. It was a high-powered race and we fell off in the last five (hundred metres). The rhythm was much better than in the heat."

On racing in the B final:
"We'll see on Thursday. It's going to be two closely contested finals. You've got runners-up from the world cups, the Norwegians who won in Munich. It's two finals with heavy hitters."

On not making the final:
"It's excruciatingly disappointing."

On whether or not their lane made a big difference in the result:
"It's difficult to know. In the end, is it the lane draw or just the great crews (you were facing)?"

On whether injury problems this season had any influence on this result:
"It all stems from the fact that my back gave out six weeks ago. It's always difficult to go in another boat. (For teammate Scott BRENNAN, AUS) it was different when someone else came in, unsettling. We had some good paddling last week. It would be great if we could've turned this week and last around."

Light Men's Four

South Africa rowers John SMITH, James THOMPSON, Matthew BRITTAIN and Sizwe NDLOVU after they qualified for the final of the men's lightweight fours by coming second behind Denmark in their semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

John SMITH (RSA)

On progressing to the final:
"We're very happy. The goal of the semi is to get to the final; it was our goal. We had a good second half and it all went to plan."

James THOMPSON (RSA)

On the race:
"It was a stepping stone towards things on Thursday. It is really important in the semi to take a step up from the heat and that's what we did today."

Matthew BRITTAIN (RSA)

On qualifying:
"I think we were very nervous coming into this race and it's a relief to get one under the belt. I'm glad we're not in the B final. You can't win anything in the B. We don't chase the result, we chase the good race and we hope the good race will lead to the good result."

On tactics:
"The plan is to pace ourselves well. We don't look to win it at the 1,000 metre mark. We definitely put ourselves out there with the best. Our focus is always on the process and try to put our best out there."

Sizwe NDLOVU (RSA)

On their performance:
"In the second half we got better. It was a bit rough and tough out there."

"The most worry was when I hit the buoy with my blade and caught a crab but managed to get it back. We put our trust in each other. We got to halfway and worked well together. I create the rhythm and then the guy behind sends it down the boat. What works for me is rhythm - rhythm is everything."

On being in the final:
"Excited. Happy. Two down, one to go. It's going to be tough, obviously, but we're up for it."

Fabrice MOREAU (FRA) on coming fourth in the lightweight men's four semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Fabrice MOREAU (FRA)

On the crew's race plan and feelings before the race:
"Before the race we were very confident, but Denmark and South Africa made a very good start and we were surprised (at the start). We can't catch up and go back to the beginning and start again. It was too difficult to catch them."

On his feelings now his Olympics are over:
"It's a lot of training to come here and in one race it's finished. It's difficult."

On whether he will compete in Rio in 2016:
"I don't know for the moment. I am 34. I think not, but my wife wants me to. I have three children (aged five, three, and one). All the training camps, it's too long for me (to be away from the children)."

Richard CHAMBERS (GBR) after qualifying for the final of the lightweight men's coxless fours by winning their semifinal at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Richard CHAMBERS (GBR)

On who to watch out for in the final:
"We definitely have to watch out for Denmark. We've beaten them earlier on, so we're in a really good position. We couldn't have done much more (today). We have to deliver our race (in Thursday's final)."

On the differences with Beijing:
"It's massively different. This is the home Olympic Games, a home crowd. They're here just for you."

On his infant son being here to support him:
"I saw him for 10 minutes yesterday. He looked more interested in chewing the grass. But it was good (to see him)."

On if he will be a mentor to the younger, less experienced rowers in his crew while preparing for the final:
"We've all been to big championships. We'll go home and chill out, just stay loose, stay relaxed."

On the strategy for the final:
"It'll be exactly the same, (just like) the 2ks (km) the last weeks (and in) the heats. It's the final of the Olympic Games, but it's no different than any other race."

Redgraviana

Five-time Olympic rowing gold medallist Steven REDGRAVE (GBR) at Eton Dorney on Tuesday.

Steven REDGRAVE (GBR)

On who he would bet his house on to win at the London 2012 Olympic Games rowing regatta:
"The Kiwi pair (Hamish BOND/Eric MURRAY (NZL). They're faster than everybody else."

On BOND/MURRAY:
"They're an odd-looking couple really. I wouldn't say that they were your classic six-foot-six athletic strong build, but they do something that makes a boat go extremely fast."

"They've got belief, they've got confidence, they've got everything that they need to do."

"They can win by as much as they'd like to win by. It's only them that's going to lose it."

On the atmosphere at Eton Dorney:
"I did expect it to be loud. I thought it would be special."

"I'm pleasantly surprised as to how early people have been getting in, how there's barely been a seat empty."

"Venue-wise I think it's worked extremely well. This seems to be the best atmosphere of all of them."

On empty seats in the Olympic family grandstands:
"The IOC need to look at their Olympic family very closely. They're not taking up their allocation. If they're not taking up their allocation then give the seats to people who do want to be here."

On whether Great Britain's athletes are meeting expectations or suffering from them:
"Tom DALEY (GBR, who came fourth in the 10m synchronised diving on Monday) has definitely got the capability to medal in the individual. It's such a fine line between success and failure."

"We as a country put a lot of expectation (on our athletes). I would have said we'd never, ever, ever win a medal in men's gymnastics. We got a bronze medal. I always felt that we've got an individual who could do something special but team bronze, that's special."


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