NEWS

Lover follows Olympian’s suicide leap

The boyfriend of a Greek Olympic athlete critically injured on Saturday after leaping off a balcony following a lovers’ quarrel tried to take his own life yesterday in exactly the same fashion – jumping from his Athens flat. Giorgos Chryssostomidis, 24, was taken to Athens’s Evangelismos Hospital in serious condition with multiple bone fractures after jumping off the same Perissos third-floor balcony that judoka Eleni Ioannou, 19, cast herself off early on Saturday morning – reportedly after a quarrel with Chryssostomidis over whether she should move into the athletes’ quarters at the Olympic Village. Ioannou, three times Greece’s heavyweight champion, remained in critical condition yesterday at Athens’s Erythros Stavros Hospital’s intensive-care unit, with multiple fractures and severe head injuries. Doctors said the state of her health had deteriorated over the previous 24 hours, and were fighting to save the judoka’s eyesight. Deputy Culture Minister for Sports Giorgos Orfanos, who visited the injured athlete in the hospital yesterday, said doctors expected to have a full picture of Ioannou’s condition over the next 10 days. The judoka’s coach, Giorgos Boutakis, said Ioannou had been under considerable pressure from her relationship with Chryssostomidis, an unemployed car mechanic. «She underwent a tough preparation period under adverse conditions; she also was under pressure from her relationship and so things came to this,» he said. «I would like all Greeks to make a wish for her.»