RIO 2016: Bid team to promote Los Angeles 2024 in Rio

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) – The Latest on the Rio Games (all times local to Rio de Janeiro):

6 p.m.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti will lead a 25-person delegation to Rio de Janeiro to promote the city’s bid for the 2024 Olympics.

The delegation also includes bid chairman Casey Wasserman, CEO Gene Sykes and vice chair Janet Evans.

American IOC members Larry Probst, Anita DeFrantz and Angela Ruggiero, along with U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun, will also be involved in LA’s bid promotion during the Rio de Janeiro Games.

The bid committee says the team will meet with International Olympic Committee leaders and sports federation officials.

Los Angeles, seeking to bring the Summer Games to the U.S. for the first time since Atlanta hosted the 1996 Olympics, is competing against Paris, Rome and Budapest, Hungary. The IOC will select the host city in September 2017.

French President Francois Hollande and Italian Premier Matteo Renzi will also be in Rio to promote the Paris and Rome bids.


4:20 p.m.

The head of Australia’s delegation at the Rio Olympics says a laptop and team shirts were stolen from the team’s accommodation at the athletes’ village on Friday while the building was being evacuated because of a small fire.

Delegation head Kitty Chiller on Sunday called the situation “concerning” but added “unfortunately theft is going to be inevitable” in a compound with 31 buildings and up to 18,000 athletes and staff.

Australia has been hard hit so far in Rio.

It declined to enter the village on the official opening day a week ago, citing gas and water leaks, electrical shorts, and general filth in its building.

The team began checking in on Wednesday, but on Friday a small fire broke out in the basement of the building, which forced an evacuation. There were no injuries.

1:55 p.m.

Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee, says the IOC is helping the local organizing committee of the Rio Games with a widely reported cash-flow problem.

He did not give details of the IOC’s financial support.

The local organizing committee has an operating budget of 7.4 billion Brazilian reals ($2.3 billion), to cover the games themselves and the cost of building roads and sports venues. Organizers have promised to operate a balanced budget, which has forced severe cutbacks.

Brazil has been plunged into its deepest recession since the 1930s, which has slowed the sales of local advertising, sponsorships, and tickets.

The budget shortfall has been reported to be about $70 million.

Bach says the IOC “is helping the organizing committee to make sure that these games will be the success we all want it to be.”

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1:15 p.m.

IOC President Thomas Bach has defended the committee’s decision not to ban Russia’s entire Olympic team and says the country’s doping scandal will not damage the credibility of the Rio de Janeiro Games.

Bach says a total ban on Russia “would not be justifiable” on either moral or legal grounds “because every human being is entitled to certain rights of natural justice.”

Bach says the IOC “set a very high bar” by imposing strict criteria for international sports federations to apply in deciding which individual Russian athletes should be cleared to compete at the Rio Games, which open on Friday.

Asked how damaging the situation is, Bach replied: “I don’t think that this, in the end, will be damaging because people will realize we have to take this decision now.”

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1:00 p.m.

Saudi Arabia will send four female athletes to the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, doubling its female participation after two women took part in the 2012 London Games for the first time.

Two of the athletes will participate in track and field, one in judo and one in fencing, Hosam al-Qurashi, executive director of the Saudi Olympic Committee, told The Associated Press on Sunday.

Among the four is Sarah Attar, who was the first woman from Saudi Arabia to compete in Olympic track and field in 2012.

Al-Qurashi says a total of 11 Saudi athletes are competing in Rio.

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12:50 p.m.

Alexander Zverev has become the latest tennis player to drop out of the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, citing health issues.

The rising German talent said in a statement that he did not feel “100 percent” in his last two matches in Washington and Toronto and that after consulting with his doctors and his team “we have decided that I have to withdraw from the Olympics.” He did not give details.

The 19-year-old Zverev, who is ranked No. 25 in the world, lost in the semifinals of Washington to Gael Monfils and then lost in the first round to Lu Yen-hsun in the first round of the Masters Series event in Toronto.

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