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August 23, 2004


Abiola Lapite

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I wouldn't say "touchy" is the right word to use in this case, as I really am rather indifferent to which flag anyone claims to represent (who would I root for, Nigeria, Britain or America?); "cynical" would be a better term.

As for Ibekwelu, he's only the most flagrant of several examples of that sort of thing I'm aware of. There's another example that sticks in my mind: I think it was either the UAE or Bahrain that promised to pay some Kenyan guy some ridiculous amount of money for the rest of his life if he'd only switch his nationality and adopt Islam - which he subsequently did. There was also another pathetic case about one woman who opted for Sudanese citizenship after her first and second choice nations declined to pick her for their national teams: see the following link for more.

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Frank McGahon

Just followed the link, Merlene Ottey is competing for Slovenia??!! WTF?

Tony Allwright

"... issuing a hyperlink policy for anyone gauche enough to presume to link to their website."

I really fail to see how this is in any way enforceable. Actually, they almost admit as much by saying that once you have applied for approval, it is automatically granted unless they say no.

Arguably, reproducing one of their images might be a breach of copyright. Perhaps also reproducing text. But linking to an Athens 2004 web page ? Never.

As a matter or principle, and even though I am currently on blog-hiatus, I feel honour-bound to break a few of their rules at once. See


Qatar have a bunch of weightlifters competing in Athens. I think all of them comes from Bulgaria originally.


For 3 years, 11 months and 2 weeks, no one, I mean NO ONE, in my office talks about gymnastics, swimming, freestyle skiing, figure skating and beach volleyball. But for 15 days every four Februarys or Augusts, everyone suddenly becomes a vocal expert in the history, tactics and every little nuance of those sports.

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