360 PHOTO: Super mum Jessica Ennis-Hill is still our golden girl after silver in Rio
Super mum Jessica Ennis-Hill is still our golden girl despite silver in the heptathlon at the Rio Olympics, writes Graham Walker.
The 30-year-old, who gave birth to her son Reggie just two years ago then returned to become world champion, has hinted that this Olympics could be her last competition.
But she may find it difficult to walk away from a chance to go for the top spot and retain her crown at the World Championships next year in London - the sight of that famous night four years ago when Ennis-Hill cemented her place in the hearts and minds of the British public.
360 PHOTO: Take a look around the Olympic Stadium as Jessica Ennis-Hill leads the final 800m event in her race for gold in Rio - CLICK HERE
Fans would certainly like to see her go out on top, after she came agonisingly close - just 35 points away - as Nafissatou Thiam claimed gold in Rio.
The reaction inside the Olympic Stadium, as Ennis-Hill ran and won the final length of the 800m, was electrifying, with the likes of Olympic legends Steve Redgrave and Kelly Holmes joining fans in the crowd who had travelled half way around the world for what was always going to be Super Saturday 2.
If there had been a roof on the stadium it would have come off as flag waving Brits screamed 'Go Jess, Go Jess' and could almost hear the same all over Britain, as the country stayed up until after 3am to will her on.
And Ennis-Hill almost did the impossible. She had to beat Thiam in the 800m by almost 10 seconds and only just missed out with a season best performance. Belgian winner Thiam, 21, claimed five personal bests over the seven events.
Yet the Sheffield girl - a pin up of London and Rio games - remains a winner in all our hearts, To become a mum, then regain world and come so close to retaining her Olympic title puts her in Britain's hall of fame forever.
Support for Ennis-Hill's achievement came from far and wide.
Adam Gemili, sprinter and captain of Great Britain's athletics team in Rio, tweeted: "What a roller coaster two days that was. Not what she would have wanted but still amazing from @J_Ennis. She is an inspiration to so many!"
Dame Kelly Holmes said on Twitter: "Oh bloody hell gutted for @J_Ennis but also what a fab result to get a silver. Well done Jess. X"
Hull City footballer Curtis Davies wrote: "It took 5 PB's in 7 events to beat Jess Ennis-Hill. Credit to her had a baby 2 years ago World Champ last year Olympic Silver now".
Ennis-Hill is from Sheffield and still trains in the city. Sheffield City Council tweeted: "Legend. Our Olympic Champion @J_Ennis wins #silver! #Sheffield loves you."
Asked if this would be her last Olympics, she said: "Possibly" and said she would go away to spend time with her family before making a decision.
Speaking to the BBC, she said: "I am really emotional. I have got to go away now to make a big decision as to what I do. I don't want to cry on TV but these years have been amazing so just really proud."
Standing next to fellow British heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson, she said: "The heptathlon is so hard. Kat knows that it's physically and mentally draining.
"I know that Kat's got so much more. She's just got to stay positive."
Johnson-Thompson finished in sixth place but said she hoped to be more consistent at Tokyo 2020.