SPORTS

Greek athletes experiencing ‘tragic’ accommodation situation in Rio

GEORGE GEORGAKOPOULOS

TAGS: Olympics

The Greek athletes and officials who arrived in Rio ahead of the start of the Olympic Games on Friday have described terrible conditions in the Olympic Village, to the extent that they had to move to another floor due to their original rooms flooding.

Warnings in the international media about poor preparations by the Brazilians have proved accurate, as the Greek mission testifies, with its head, Isidoros Kouvelos, speaking on Sunday about major problems never seen before at Olympic Villages.

“The situation is tragic as far as our accommodation at the Olympic Village is concerned,” Kouvelos told Athina 984 radio station in an interview.

“Outside it’s like a jewel, but inside it’s like a building site. The plumbing is out of order, water runs everywhere, there are no mirrors in the bathrooms... Imagine that we had to move to another floor because ours flooded.

“That’s nothing compared to what other missions are suffering, such as the Japanese, which had to deal with a gas leak. Every morning in the meeting of the mission chiefs many complaints are heard and the hosts simply assure us that the problems will be solved.

“What we have come up against is unprecedented, and of course we never faced anything like it at London or Beijing, and certainly not in Athens. Work has been abandoned at the Village because the workers have not been paid and some of them have even made off with some of the materials,” said Kouvelos, who is also the head of the Hellenic Olympic Academy.

The men’s national water polo team faced another problem, as the coach driver assigned by the organizers was unable to find the way to the training center, meaning the team missed its training session.

“The problem with transport is huge, and the team missed its training. [The organizers] apologized a thousand times, but what good is that to us?” Kouvelos stated.

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