Hamish Bond and Eric Murray have dominated world rowing for
the past three years. Yesterday, they were ranked top of the
New Zealand sporting world.
The pair were awarded the Lonsdale Cup for winning the gold
medal in the pairs at the London Olympics.
Bond, who confirmed yesterday he and Murray intended to keep
rowing, is only the second Otago sportsman to win the award.
The other recipient was Olympic swimmer Danyon Loader in 1992
Former Otago athlete Dick Tayler, who won the 10,000m at the
Christchurch Commonwealth Games, won the award in 1974. He
was registered with the Wellington centre at the time but had
spent the previous six years in Dunedin and ran with the
''It was an honour for me and Eric,'' Bond told the Otago
Daily Times from Cambridge yesterday.
''It's a who's who of New Zealand sporting history. It's good
company to be in and a nice way to finish the year. It's a
good cherry on top.''
Bond and Murray have decided to continue in the pair to the
''We have just got to figure out the final nuts and bolts,''
''We have been busy and under the pump with Olympic-related
things and Eric had his boxing.
''We will carry on but we have just got to work out what our
goals are and the how, what, when and why.''
Sir Eion Edgar has arranged for Bond to do some part-time
work at the Forsyth Barr office at Cambridge.
''It will help me to continue my development outside sport,''
''I finished my degree and diploma at the start of the year
and this is a good way for me to keep in touch with the
''You can become self-absorbed in your own wee bubble in
sport. It is a good opportunity for me to get an interest
Bond and Murray were expected to win the Olympic gold medal
after being unbeaten on the international scene for the past
They had been challenged by the English pair of Peter Reed
and Andrew Triggs-Hodge for the past two years, but Reed and
Triggs-Hodge quit the pair to join the Great Britain four
that won the gold medal at the Olympics.
The Lonsdale Cup goes to the athlete or team to have made the
most outstanding contribution to Olympic or Commonwealth
sport in the preceding year.
From an outstanding field including six Olympic gold
medal-winning athletes and teams, Bond and Murray were named
The cup was first presented in 1961 to Murray Halberg. Since
then it has been awarded to outstanding New Zealand athletes
including John Walker, Peter Snell and Rob Waddell.
Athletes have won the award on 17 occasions and rowers nine
times. Shot-putter Valerie Adams has won the award three
times and it has been won twice by Loader, Snell, Waddell,
Ian Ferguson, Paul MacDonald and Sarah Ulmer.
Bond will spend Christmas at Mt Maunganui with partner
Elizabeth Travis, a doctor at Waikato Hospital.
''I will spend a lot of time in the holiday period gardening
at my home in Cambridge,'' Bond said.
There was more good news for New Zealand rowing yesterday
with the decision of Olympic gold medallist Mahe Drysdale
(34) to defend his single sculls title at the Rio de Janeiro
Olympics. Drysdale will take a six-month sabbatical from
rowing and will be back in the boat at Lake Karapiro for
trials in July to gain selection for the following month's
world championships in South Korea.