Olympics / Israel delegation / Governing body cuts swimmers from three events
Israeli swimmers who only meet 'B' qualification in a certain race will not be able to compete in that category in London, says FINA.
FINA, the international governing body of swimming, announced Wednesday that Israeli swimmers who only met the "B" qualification criterion in a certain race will not be able to compete in that category in London. The upshot is that Nimrod Shapira Bar Or will swim in only the 200-meter backstroke and not in the 100-meter butterfly or 100-meter free style, while Imri Ganiel will be left out of the 200-meter breaststroke and will have to settle for the 100-meter breaststroke.
The Israeli Swimming Association reacted with shock to the announcement. According to officials who reviewed registration forms and the criteria, they previously had no hint of the matter.
"I trust Gili Lustig and the Olympic Committee, who checked thoroughly everything that was needed over the last several months," said swimming team coach Leonid Kaufman in an angry tone. "When something like this arises a week before the Olympic Games, it hurts the swimmers and the entire delegation. We suddenly found ourselves in three fewer events."
The swim team flies to London today without Jonathan Kopelev, who had to undergo an appendectomy and is doubtful for the Games.