Take the semifinal for what it was: a battle to the bitter end between two proud football nations.
Custer was played as a cliché of grit and courage, jaw clenched with resolve as he fought to the bitter end.
I deliberately ignored all the warning voices inside me and enjoyed the time by his side almost until the bitter end.
In lexicons of sea language going back to 1759, the bitter end is the part of a cable which is round about the bits (two great timbers used to belay cables) when the ship is at anchor.
Bitter end of the Cable, the End which is wound about the Bitts. ["The News-Readers Pocket-Book: Or, a Military Dictionary," London, 1759]See bit (n.1). So, when a cable is played out to the bitter end, there is no more left to play. The term began to be used c.1835 in non-nautical use and with probable influence of bitter (adj.).