Sportsmen and women speak of using momentum to achieve or build towards future success.
Sport has, once more, stirred pride in a nation that is battered with depressing reports of crime, corruption, fraud and political skulduggery.
The three gold, two silver and one bronze medals won in South Africa’s best Olympic showing since readmission have brought joy into people’s lives. Those who earned the gongs will find their lives irrevocably changed.
Now we need the powers that be to grasp the momentum and change, too.
There will be many youngsters who have been inspired by our Olympians – medal winners or not. It is the duty of sports bodies and the government to seize the momentum and to build on it for Rio 2016 and beyond.
There is always the argument that there is not enough money to spend on developing athletes in disciplines other than the big three – football, rugby and cricket. This is lazy reasoning. Just one example of this is that enough money was found for unnecessary officials to get freebie trips to the Games.
Merely throwing money at something does not guarantee success; it is using what is available in the smartest way possible that will garner results.
Every cent spent on officials and bureaucrats is one cent that would be better used to find and nurture talent.
It is one cent that could be directed at building facilities at schools or public grounds for use by those youngsters who have had their dreams fueled by the Olympic flame.
Many of those who are already in the sporting arena do not have the financial support to be able to give up their “day job” to reach the full promise of their talent.
Now is the time for those who run sport to grasp the London baton and take it across the winning line in Rio.