ATTRACTS OLYMPIC MEDIA ATTENTION
August 23rd 2000
Earlier today, a Press Conference was held in Athens to announce the details of the September 7/10 World Junior Waterski Championships to be held here in Agrinio. This was attended by over 40 Journalists and 3 majorTelevision Stations.
Following this announcement, Media attention turned to the Greek bid to have Waterskiing included in the Athens Olympics in 2004. Present to answer these Media questions were the Secretary General of the International Waterski Federation, Mr.Graziano Tognala and the President of the Greek Waterski Federation, Mrs Depy Papadimitriou.
To clarify the present position for the Journalists and to answer the many questions put to him, Graziano Tognala summarized the Olympics situation as follows :
At this point. Secretary General Tognala stated that as of today, no answer has yet been received from the IOC to the decisions and confirmations made in Greece by the Greek National Olympic Committee, the Greek Olympic Organising Committee and the Greek Minister for Sport and Tourism.
The President of the Greek Waterski Federation, Depy Papadimitriou. was then asked why it is so important to include Waterskiing in the Athens Olympic Games in 2004. She stated that Greece is surrounded by water, is a maritime nation – and has over 2000 Waterski training and recreational sites throughout the Country. She emphasised the impact on the Tourism Industry which a positive IOC decision will have. She also pointed out the strength of Greek Waterskiers in international competitions and that athlete Angeliki Andriopolou is already ranked number five in the World in the Overall category. She emphasised that Greece expects to capture Olympic medals in this sport in 2004.
The Media attention then turned to the selection of a suitable venue for Waterskiing in Greece. It was clear from the Media reaction that this is of major interest to many areas of the Country. Graziano Tognala, IWSF Secretary General, stated that the location must be close to Athens and that three or four suitable sites have already been identified. However, he declined to name the preferred location and stated that this decision will not be finalised till after a positive IOC decision is announced.
Within twenty four hours of this important Athens Press Conference, the Greek Olympic Organising Committee, will meet Mr Jacques Rogge, President of the IOC Coordinating Committee, for important update discussions on general Olympic Games preparation progress in Greece. Over 30 million Waterskiers in 89 Countries are hopeful that the declared wishes of the Greek National Olympic Committee to have Waterskiing included in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens will be respected. No doubt this question will be one of several important questions facing the IOC in the run up to Sydney over the coming weeks.
For Further Details, contact:
International Waterski Federation
FAX : 353-1-450-2138