Team Scotland bosses clean athletes' accommodation

The athletes' village in Delhi Team Scotland has asked whether the games should go ahead if the village issues are not resolved

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Managers of Scotland's Commonwealth Games team have had to clean the athletes' accommodation to bring it up to standard before the games in Delhi.

The team arrived in India last week and found the athletes' block "unsafe and unfit for human habitation".

An alternative site was arranged but it still required "serious cleaning", according to a team statement.

The bosses have quetioned whether the Games should go ahead on 3 October if the situation was not resolved.

The event will run for two weeks, until 14 October, before the handover to Glasgow, hosts of the 2014 Games.

Scotland was one of six countries that arrived in the Indian capital at the earliest opportunity to set up its team headquarters, along with England, Wales, New Zealand, Australia and Canada.

The team statement said: "However, on arrival in Delhi on Thursday last week (16 September), Team Scotland officials found that building works had fallen seriously behind schedule and that our allocated accommodation blocks were far from finished and in their view, unsafe and unfit for human habitation.

The athletes' village in Delhi, pictured from the exterior The village, which is surrounded by fencing, will house all the competitors

"After representation to the Organising Committee, Scotland was reallocated finished accommodation, but which still required serious cleaning and maintenance to bring it up to the necessary Games ready standards.

"This has now been largely addressed by the Scotland team management, cleaning the seven-storey tower block from top to bottom themselves with assistance from Delhi Games volunteers.

"However many of the other blocks in the residential zone still remain in a highly unsatisfactory state."

Athletes and team members from other participating countries are due to begin arriving on Thursday.

Start Quote

We've been given promises that everything would be fixed by the close of business on 19th September. It wasn't”

End Quote Mike Hooper Games Federation CEO

Jon Doig, Team Scotland's chef de mission, has met jointly with his counterparts and the High Commissioners to try to pressurise Delhi's organising committee to respond to the issues immediately.

"Representation was also made to the Commonwealth Games Federation to make a realistic decision as to at what point and under what conditions they would determine whether the games will be able to go ahead should the village issues not be resolved," the statement said.

Mr Doig added: "The other countries will be arriving soon and the organisers will simply be overwhelmed by the volume of the problems they face unless they take action now.

"We will continue to monitor the situation before determining our next response.

"At this point we are planning for full participation in the Games and sincerely hope that the outstanding issues can be resolved, however we will not compromise on issues of safety, security and health."

Mike Hooper, the chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Federation, also criticised the facilities.

"Some of them, I mean the word filthy is almost generous," he said.

"We've been given promises that everything would be fixed by the close of business on 19th September. It wasn't.

"Yesterday was some improvement, but there is still a lot to be done in regard to the overall condition of the village from a cleanliness point of view, and from obviously a health and hygiene perspective."

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