December 30/09 9:12 am - England To Pull Out of Commonwealth Games? - UPDATED
Posted by Editor on 12/30/09
A report in the British newspaper The Telegraph states that there is "virtually no chance" that a British team will be sent to the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, India next October, due to security concerns over terrorist attacks.
The article goes on to say that if England pulls out, it is likely that other participants such as Canada and Australia would also withdraw, since they have troops in terrorist hotspots, including Afganistan.
There have been no statements from Canadian Games officials regarding Canada's participation, and a CCA spokesperson said that the CCA is still waiting to find out what athletes quotas are going to be before deciding what team might be sent. For road cyclists, the timing of the Commonwealth Games is extremely awkward, coming only days after the Road Worlds in Melbourne, Australia.
The Games organizers are also reportedly well behind schedule on building facilities, including the velodrome. New Delhi beat Hamilton, Ontario in the bid to host the 2010 Games.
Technically, the previous host is supposed to step in - which would be Melbourne. However, Australian sources say that there is no chance that the city would.
Read the full Telegraph report Here.
A later report from the Chester Chronicle had officials downplaying the Telegraph article, stating that any decision whether or not to attend would not come until approximately one month before the Games, and that there are "no major security concerns". Politically, pulling out so far in advance of the Games would certainly damage Indian pride and British-Indian relations.
Read the Chester Chronicle reportHere