Valerie Adams left off startlist for shot put

05:33, Aug 06 2012
Valerie Adams
NOT ON THE LIST: Reigning Olympic and world champion Valerie Adams was mistakenly left off the startlist for the women's shot put qualifying.

The New Zealand Olympic Committee is refusing to answer any questions over how someone forgot to register defending champion and gold medal favourite Valerie Adams for the 2012 Olympic Games.

The startling mistake emerged only hours before Adams' Olympic shot put title defence, forcing the NZOC to plead for an emergency amendment from the International Olympic Committee and the International Association of Athletics Federations.

The IOC and IAAF have relented and Adams is in, but serious questions remain around the oversight which angered Adams on the eve of her Olympic title defence.

But Dave Currie, chef de mission of the New Zealand Olympic team, said the NZOC would not be responding to the snafu until it had the answers to what happened.

"The questions being asked are very good questions, but we need a little while to ascertain quite what has happened and how to deal with it," Currie told Fairfax Media.

"I can't answer those questions right now. We can't speculate ... we need to go back and look at the process.

"I'm not trying to evade it and I know the interest, there's going to be a whole lot of interest in how this could happen.

"I'm not trying to run away from it, but right now, until we've had time to look at it, I can't say any more."

Currie said the NZOC learned mid-afternoon London time (early Monday morning NZ time) what had happened and accepted "it's not what you want to happen the night before an event".

"We're extremely disappointed," he added.

Currie wouldn't say when the NZOC would reveal what had happened, and it is likely that won't become public until after Adams throws in the qualifying rounds from 9.45 (tonight NZ time) and the final tomorrow (6.15am NZ time).

"We need to make sure there's no more disruption, so let's get the event over and then we'll worry about what happened," he said.

"We're not going to let it drag on, but we're not going to put a timeframe on it. We need to make sure there's no disruption to her preparation, and then we'll focus on all the things being asked. All the energy at the moment is going to making sure she (Adams) is in and that this doesn't have a negative impact on her performance.

"Right now there's nothing more to add."

The distraction couldn't be worse timing for Adams. The 27-year-old star of New Zealand's Olympic team is trying to become only the eighth Kiwi to ever defend an Olympic crown.

She is unbeaten on the world track and field circuit for more than two years and is favourite to claim gold again.


Fairfax Media