http://www.sina.com.cn 2012年07月31日 11:40 中国日报网
Team GB athletes who win gold at this year's home Olympics will be immortalised in the national memory. But for competitors from some other nations, prestige isn't the only thing driving them on.
Virtually all the world's national Olympic committees will be offering cash rewards to athletes who take gold in theirdisciplines.
Except Britain, which maintains that victory is its own reward.
A gold medalist from Malaysia will walk away with about ?400,000, for example. But if they emerge triumphant from badminton, the country's strongest sport, they will receive an additional lump of gold - literally - worth some ?380,000, The Sunday Times reports.
A gold medallist from Russia's remote Chelyabinsk region, meanwhile, will walk away with a ?600,000 reward.
For Team GB stars the rewards are far less tangible. From the moment any take gold, the Royal Mail will begin designing a stamp bearing their image and deliver them to 500 post offices for sale the following day.
The champions' stamps will be available in books of six for ?3.60 or individually for 60p - to be immortalised forever among philatelists.
UK athletes could be forgiven then for looking enviously at the incentives on offer to their international rivals.
The Indian government will be offering coaching jobs to its athletes who win medals, the country's sports minister Ajay Maken has announced.
Of the nations that finished in the top 10 of total medal hauls at Beijing four years ago, Italy is the most generous to its stars. It offers ?116,000 for a gold.
The basic payment on offer to Russian athletes is ?85,000, but that can hiked up significantly by regional bonuses. The US will pay a not to be sniffed at ?15,000 to a gold medallist, while Austria and Germany will pay just under ?13,000.
Still, with fat sponsorship deals on offer and the prospect of punditry work with broadcasters at future Games and related events, Team GB stars are unlikely to go hungry in years to come.