Saturday, October 2, 2010

Scots team excused from Delhi Commonwealth Games ceremony

SCOTLAND's athletes have been told they do not have to attend the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games today because of fears they will be penned in holding areas for hours at a time.

As Prince Charles flew into Delhi yesterday for the extravagant curtain-call for the event, local dancers complained they had been held for long periods without food and water during rehearsals. Some collapsed in the heat.

But although Scottish team bosses appear confident that competitors will not face undue delays, last night they were still awaiting answers about precise timings for the event before delivering a definitive briefing to their athletes.

Although athletes competing on day one of events tomorrow are already banned from attending the ceremony, there are also concerns about those involved in events over the next few days.

"There were some questions raised this morning in terms of the timings: when the athletes leave, get to the ceremony, then get back again," Team Scotland chef de mission Jon Doig said.

"We have a policy that athletes competing on day one (Monday) do not go to the ceremony. It's quite a physically and emotionally demanding occasion at any Games. We will go back to our team leaders with the final timings, and athletes will make their individual decisions whether to go or not."

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