Other Sport

Rio rejects criticism of Olympic facilities

2015-09-17 21:45
Rio 2016 logo (File)

Rio de Janeiro - Rio de Janeiro's mayor on Thursday rejected harsh criticism by the international swimming organization of the city's preparations for swimming events at the 2016 Games.

FINA, based in Switzerland, sharply criticized pollution off Copacabana Beach where open-water events will be held, reduced seating capacity at the pool for the main races, and the lack of a roof over the pool for diving, water polo and synchronized swimming, according to a report by the Associated Press.

FINA accused Rio's mayor, Eduardo Paes, of "seriously damaging the image and value of FINA and its disciplines," AP quoted a leaked letter from FINA President Julio Maglione to Paes as saying.

FINA said it was "disappointed" by the leaking of the letter but did not comment on the contents.

Paes said that the criticism was unwarranted and that Rio "has met all the demands" of the International Olympic Committee.

FINA and the IOC "always knew" that the Maria Lenk diving pool had no roof, he said in a statement, explaining that Rio lacked the resources to add the structure.

Likewise, the capacity at the main pool, which will be able to take only 13,000 people compared to the 17,000 capacity at the 2012 London Olympics, "was always known" to FINA, Paes said.

"Our installations cannot be compared to those in Beijing. They won't be as luxurious, they won't be over the top, because that costs a lot of money and the city has to be careful with the money," a spokesman for the mayor's office told AFP.

Paes did not refer to the seawater quality off Copacabana Beach. Nearby Guanabara Bay, where sailing events will take place, has been condemned by independent environmentalists as dangerously polluted.

Read more on:    swimming

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

How excited are you about the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.