England athletes get go-ahead for Indian Games

ENGLISH athletes have been given the green light to travel to India for the Commonwealth Games in October despite fears over security.

It had been suggested the England team may pull out of the Games following fresh concerns of terrorist activity after 15 people were injured in bomb blasts before an Indian Premier League match in Bangalore on 17 April.

But after receiving regular security updates from Delhi, Commonwealth Games England (CGE) is to write to all of its associations informing them that the team will indeed travel for the start of the Games on 3 October.

A total of 71 nations are expected to take part in this year’s Games, making it the biggest multi-sport event held in India since the Asian Games in 1982.

Sir Andrew Foster, the chairman of CGE, said: “England’s intention is to compete at the Games and we are currently making arrangements to create the best possible environment for success in Delhi. Our team will be the biggest England team for an overseas Games to date, with an anticipated team size of more than 550, including nearly 400 athletes.

“Security is something we and the organising committee take very seriously. We have taken, and will continue to take, expert advice on the situation.”

Meanwhile, China have been stripped of the gymnastics bronze medal won by the women’s team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics after it was found they had fielded an underage athlete. An IOC investigation found Dong Fangxiao was only 14 at the time – under the minimum age of 16.