SA team to compete at Commonwealth Games

2010-09-22 15:01

The South African team will compete at the crisis-hit Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, India, next month, officials from the nation’s Olympic governing body said today.

Tubby Reddy, chief executive of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc), said today they had been given the go-ahead by a team of security officials, but would monitor the safety of the athletes during the quadrennial Games, which start on October 3.

“The security team gave us their findings, and the team management were briefed,” Reddy said.

“We’re leaving on Sunday. If there are any problems that warrant us returning once we’re there, then that’s what we’ll do.

“India’s state security have assured us they have structures in place to ensure the safety of the athletes. Our state security will add their own elements to protect the team as well, and we will go ahead as planned.”

Sascoc president Gideon Sam was also confident that the team would be safe during the 11-day competition, and confirmed a fact-finding team had returned from New Delhi last week, satisfied with the state of preparations by the organisers.

“Based on the reports we’ve received, unless something serious happens between now and then, the team will be boarding a plane on Sunday, as planned,” said Sam.

Scotland have delayed their departure to the Games, while the participation of British teams is still in doubt, and a number of athletes have already withdrawn due to numerous problems surrounding the 19th edition of the Games.

A footbridge collapsed near the main venue on yesterday, following an attack on two tourists, while the construction of buildings is not yet completed, and the athletes’ village is reported to be in a “filthy state”.

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