No Olympics is free from controversies but it seems London is having one too many with one after another debate unfolding making it very hard for the organisers to cope with.
No sooner than the doping allegation against Chinese swimming champion Ye Shiwen dried down a match-fixing scandal by badminton players hit the Games and before the calm is restored a British cyclist triggered a new controversy.
Britain’s first man Philip Hindes crashed after a quarter of a lap in the
match against Germany in Thursday’s qualifying round, prompting a re-start with the home team going on to win the title in world-record time by beating France in the final.
It appeared initially that Hindes had a trouble with his front wheel and was about to be passed by team mate Jason Kenny. Under International Cycling Union regulations, Britain would have been disqualified had Kenny passed Hindes as riders start in a pre-determined order and are not allowed to change it.
Hindes then crashed to avoid the disqualification and the race started again. The German-born said afterwards that he had crashed deliberately, before denying it in the post-race news conference.
British team claimed his comments had been ‘lost in translation’, but it could hardly appease the critics. It’s not only the hosts, but the International Olympic Committee is also being blamed for overlooking such a serious incident.
When the IOC acted swiftly to investigate the match-fixing scandal, they saw no reason for doing the same in cycling.
‘At present there are no plans (to investigate),’ spokesman Mark Adams told during his daily briefing. ‘People were not deprived of the contest. The UCI are aware of the situation. They do not see any reason to question the result and neither do we.’
IOC was not at all prepared to treat Hindes’ crashing his bike in the same of way it did with women’s doubles badminton players who deliberately tried to lose their matches.
‘…In the badminton case, I think it’s clear to everyone that clearly crossed the line. I believe we could clearly say that best efforts were made in that competition by the British team,’ he said.
Britain heaved a sigh of relief with IOC’s position otherwise it would have been a complete setback for them. They expected multiple gold medals from cycling but already lost one hope with their women team being disqualified.
In another incident in the same event, China had to trade their gold medal for silver in favour of their final opponents Germany for illegal changeovers while earlier in the Games, Britain were awarded silver medal in gymnastics only to be taken away quickly for bronze.
It’s not only the incident of medal change. In boxing Japanese bantamweight Satoshi Shimizu knocked Azerbaijan’s Magomed Abdulhamidov down six times but still lost the contest, the decision though was later overturned on appeal.
IOC spokesman, however, claimed that they have taken this incident seriously.
‘Obviously we are following the story —- as you can see from yesterday [Thursday], when there was an issue, it was dealt with and action was taken,’ he said.
-With New Age input