Commonwealth Games

Partying Aussie sent home

2010-10-15 11:24
Australian athletes at the Closing Ceremony (File)
Delhi - An Australian athlete has been sent home from the Commonwealth Games in disgrace for late-night partying.

Australian Commonwealth Games boss Perry Crosswhite on Friday confirmed an athlete had been sent home, but refused to disclose their identity.

Australian athletes damaged their accommodation during celebrations following their table-topping gold medal haul at the Delhi Commonwealth Games, officials said Friday.

Lalit Bhanot, the organising committee secretary general, told AFP that the Australian delegation had agreed to pay for repairs needed after raucous parties in the Australian residential area.

The Australian High Commission (embassy) in New Delhi admitted that "spirited celebrations involving the Australian team and a number of other teams" had taken place, during which a washing machine was damaged.

But it angrily denied a report in the Times of India that athletes vandalised their tower in the Games village because India had beaten Australia in a cricket Test match on Wednesday.

The report "was factually wrong, insulting to Australia’s athletes and can only be described as a fantasy," the high commission said in a statement.

It confirmed that "a washing machine was damaged, though it remains unclear who did the damage, what their nationality was, and whether it was deliberate or accidental."

Delhi Police spokesman Rajan Bhagat confirmed to AFP that police had found a broken washing machine in the village, but had no plans to investigate the matter further.

The Times of India said the machine had been thrown out of a window in the athletes' tower.

The Australian delegation had agreed to pick up the tab in line with the rules of the Games which hold teams liable for damage at their premises, Bhanot told AFP.

"The Australian delegation will be paying," he said, adding that the damage was sustained during celebrations that "had nothing to do with cricket."

The Times of India report had claimed the Australians had vandalised their accommodation after India inflicted a heavy defeat on the Australian cricket team and won a two-match series two-nil.

The report, citing unnamed police sources, said the athletes "shouted slogans against batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar who played a pivotal role in ensuring India's victory."

Australia were runaway winners at the Commonwealth Games with 74 golds and a total of 176.

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