What a pity that one young Kiwi should win a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games and promptly vent his spleen about the silver medallist, a fellow Kiwi. We rarely have the thrill of watching New Zealanders fight out the finish of an Olympic or Commonwealth Games. When two Kiwis finish in the medals we are accustomed to seeing them take mutual pleasure in their achievement.
Not so mountain biker Sam Gaze. He rode an impressive race to overtake his countryman, Anton Cooper, after being stopped briefly by a puncture. He then tarnished his moment of glory forever with an ungracious attack on Cooper's sportsmanship.
Evidently he expected Cooper to stop with him while he blew up the tyre with a gas canister. Whatever the etiquette of cycling may be in that situation, sport has a code for winning and New Zealand values it.
Gaze and Cooper fought out the finish at the Glasgow Games four years ago when Cooper won, a result that still grates with Gaze. He is clearly not a gracious loser or winner, but he is only 22. Let us hope he thinks about the words of the apology he was obliged to make.
"I reacted badly ... I am really embarrassed [that] a special day for New Zealand cycling was tainted by my actions.
"I respect Anton and his ability ... I was proud we could finish one-two again like we did in Glasgow and am grateful for the talent we are growing in New Zealand ... "
Next time he can show he means it.