Olympics 2012

Sascoc bows to CAS's pressure

2012-07-25 07:49
Tubby Reddy (Gallo)
Johannesburg - South Africa's Olympic governing body says it has been forced to include horse rider Alex Peternell in the Olympic team, two days after the country's lone equestrian entry was withdrawn.

Tubby Reddy, chief executive of the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc), said in a statement on Wednesday that the national Olympic body had been told by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to include Peternell in the eventing discipline for the London Games, which officially opens on Friday.

"This is the second attempt by Peternell to take Sascoc and the SAEF (SA Equestrian Federation) to CAS," Reddy said.

"As we all know, this athlete has been based in the United Kingdom for the last 11 years consecutively and we have now been instructed to include him in the equestrian discipline of eventing.

"It is indeed a very sad day for us as a country to be instructed to select an athlete into Team South Africa against our will, but being a disciplined member of the Olympic movement we have no option but to adhere fully to this decision."

On Saturday, CAS ruled in favour of Peternell, ranked 164th in the world, who objected to Paul Hart's selection on the grounds that Hart was ranked 442nd in the world.

Hart, who left with Team South Africa last week, was withdrawn by Sascoc from the Games.

Reddy said on Monday the SAEF maintained that Hart had been the "correct choice" and a decision was made not to fill South Africa's place in the eventing discipline.

Peternell returned to CAS, again appealing the decision, and again he was successful in his bid for inclusion.

"To Paul Hart, all I can say is that as Sascoc we tried assiduously and to the best of our ability to support you in your quest for Olympic representation and in fact challenged CAS twice in this process, indicating that it is our belief that your selection was in fact a fair process," Reddy said.

"Unfortunately with this ruling of CAS we cannot deviate in any way whatsoever as this ruling gives a clear indication that the selection of Peternell has been made by CAS, and we are now implementing their decision.

"It is with regret that one of our loyal countrymen, Paul Hart has to bear the brunt of this sad situation."

Reddy said a number of comments had been posted on Sascoc's website in support of Hart's inclusion ahead of Peternell.

"This decision is unfortunate as it forces upon the South African public an athlete that they do not necessarily recognise and one that they do not necessarily support," he said.

"While this whole affair is regrettable, for the sake of the Olympic Games it is important to move forward and focus our energies on the job on hand and concentrate on our team's preparation."

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
22 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Sat, 26 Jul 2014 @04:00
  • SS4:
    Sat, 26 Jul 2014 @05:00
  • SS7:
    Sat, 26 Jul 2014 @06:00
  • SS5:
    Sat, 26 Jul 2014 @06:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

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