Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has criticised the decision by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) to exclude three local athletes from competing in the Commonwealth Games. The Minister has written to FIG seeking an immediate overturn of this decision.
The Minister said:
“The decision taken by the International Gymnastics Federation to exclude our athletes, Eamon Montgomery, Ewan McAteer and Rhys McClenaghan, from the Commonwealth Games is a disgrace.
“The announcement is ill advised and does not respect the rights of our citizens.
“The timing of the announcement is something that I struggle to understand given that it is so close to the start of the Games. The athletes concerned have put their lives on hold and have dedicated months, if not years, to prepare to compete at the Birmingham Games. The decision of the Federation has totally disregarded the detrimental impact that the decision will have on the athletes, their families and on the sport of gymnastics here.
“I have contacted FIG seeking an immediate overturn of this decision.”
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