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No medal but 'cool' Olympic curler earns famous fans, donations
Matt Hamilton fell agonisingly short of a curling medal at the Beijing Olympics on Friday but the American did win a legion of new fans -- including Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.
The 32-year-old Hamilton, who cuts a distinctive figure with his tattoos, long hair and bushy moustache, saw his hopes of bronze evaporate as the USA men lost 8-5 loss to Canada.
But he was upbeat all the same because after the Games he will cut off his "luscious locks" to raise money for charity.
Being on global television screens brought more awareness to his fundraising campaign for cancer research.
"I have this great opportunity with curling, being in the spotlight. I just wanted to give something back when I have (received) so much from this sport," said Hamilton, who also sported colourful trainers.
The American's funky look has also won him and curling new fans -- among them actor and former pro wrestler "The Rock", who tweeted to his 15.8 million followers praising how "cool" Hamilton was with his "focus, flexibility & hair".
"It’s all encompassing, so much neat stuff has come through," said Hamilton of the attention from celebrities and casual watchers of the sport.
"Whether it's being tweeted at by The Rock or other celebrities, or getting words of encouragement from people all over the world that I have never met.
"They watched curling, saw me, and thought that guy is awesome and took the time to reach out. It is overwhelming."