Olympic Diary

USAIN Bolt’s father believes the humble yam is responsible for his son’s world record breaking 100m run on Saturday night.

Wellesly Bolt said his son was partial to the vegetable grown in the north western region of Jamaica where the sprinter was born, “It was definitely the Trelawny yam,” said Bolt senior.

****

100,000 free condoms have been placed inside the Olympic Village by the local government.

Beijing Health Chiefs have also left 300,000 condoms in hotel rooms across the city along with AIDS prevention leaflets.

Since the 1992 Winter Games in Albertville France, free condoms have become a regular feature in the Olympic Village.

Jeroen Sluijter, a 33-year-old baseball player from Holland praised the scheme.

He said: “You’ve got 16,000 athletes and officials in the village and it is very likely some boys will like some girls and there will be sex going on. If there are free condoms around, people are more likely to use them. “

****

JAPAN’S Judo coach, Hitoshi Saito is not a happy man. The country won just two Olympic medals in a sport it traditionally dominates.

He is planning some drastic measures.

“I have to bear the responsibility and I think that I should slit my belly to apologise.”

The 47-year-old is to resign on his return home.

****

IRAQI sprinter Dina Hussein was forced to purchase a second hand pair of track shoes for her Olympic campaign.

The International Olympic Committee had suspended the Iraqi National Olympic Committee from competing in Beijing citing government interference when the government replaced the NOC members.

The IOC made a last minute decision to allow Hussein to attend but with lack of resources and money she had to provide her own equipment.

****

KOBE Bryant is big in China. Figures released at the weekend showed that Bryant’s LA Lakers jersey has topped sales of NBA merchandise in China for the second consecutive year. Boston Celtics’ Kevin Garnett is second with home grown talent Yao Ming back in tenth, four places down from last year.

“Nationality is immaterial when it comes to most favoured basketball players. Fans go by skills alone,” said Beijing fans Zhong Yu who spent almost 200 Euro purchasing a Kobe replica top on the web.

****

THERE was a minor international incident in the Olympic Village last week after eight bicycles belonging to the New Zealand team went missing.

The Kiwis had shipped ten mountain bikes from home so they could travel around the 100 plus acres complex.

Team boss Dave Currie launched a number of appeals at daily chef de mission meetings and two days later the missing bikes were restored to their rightful place.

“I’m not going to speculate on who they were in the spirit of friendship. I can assure you they weren’t Australians,” he said.

****

A PARAGUAYAN javelin thrower has been turning heads in the Olympic Village.

Leryn Franco, who competes in the heats tomorrow, formerly placed second in the Miss Paraguay contest and also entered the Miss Bikini Universe competition two years ago.

“Modelling is a way for me to continue with my sport. The hours are flexible and you can earn good money through photographic modelling and the catwalk,” she said.

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up