Tennis players barred from Olympics over unforgivable mistake

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Ekaterine Gorgodze and Oksana Kalashnikova have been barred from the Olympics. Image: Getty
Ekaterine Gorgodze and Oksana Kalashnikova have been barred from the Olympics. Image: Getty

Two tennis players from Georgia have been barred from competing at the Olympics in Tokyo after officials in their home country failed to send the required paperwork.

Oksana Kalashnikova and Ekaterine Gorgodze had been told by officials that they had been entered into the Olympics tennis event, but were left furious when they found out they weren't.

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They took their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which denied their appeal on Saturday.

CAS ruled that it had to turn away the doubles players because they were never formally entered for the Games, even though Georgia’s Olympic committee “informed the applicants that their application had been submitted.”

Without a formal entry for the Olympics, CAS ruled that the “consequence, however unfortunate for the two athletes, can only be the dismissal of their petition.”

American tennis writer Ben Rothenberg reported that Kalashnikova and Gorgodze could potentially sue the Georgian Olympic Committee.

"Sounds like they could probably sue the Georgian federations involved, but definitely no recourse to enter a tournament that is already set to go," he tweeted.

Polish swimmers sent home over shocking admin error

The farce comes just days after six swimmers from Poland were sent home from the Tokyo Games due to an administrative error.

Poland had sent 23 swimmers to Japan but the country's swimming federation was forced to cut the squad down to 17 based on world governing body FINA's qualifying rules.

President Pawel Slominski apologised and said he fully understood the anger of the swimmers who returned home.

"I express great regret, sadness and bitterness about the situation related to the qualification of our swimmers for the Olympic Games in Tokyo," Slominski said in a statement.

"Such a situation should not take place, and the reaction of the swimmers, their emotions, the attack on the Polish Swimming Federation is understandable to me and justified."

He said the error was due to the "desire to allow as many players and coaches as possible to take part in the Games".

Media reports identified the six swimmers as Alicja Tchorz, Bartosz Piszczorowicz, Aleksandra Polanska, Mateusz Chowaniec, Dominika Kossakowska and Jan Holub.

Tchorz, who competed at the 2012 and 2016 Games, expressed her anger on social media.

"Imagine dedicating five years of your life and striving for another start at the most important sporting event ... giving up your private life and work, sacrificing your family ... your dedication results in a total flop," she said on Facebook.

Chowaniec added on Instagram: "I'm deeply shocked by what happened... this is an absurd situation for me that should never have happened. In fact, I hope to wake up from this nightmare eventually."

Swimming news website SwimSwam reported several Polish swimmers had signed an open letter to the PZP seeking the resignation of the organisation's entire board.

with agencies

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