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Athletes happy with facilities at Rio Olympics

ATHLETICS By Tony Owori | August 3rd 2016
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, center, poses in athletes village between Nawal El Moutawakel, left, head of the IOC's evaluation commission, and Brazil's Olympic Committee President Carlos Nuzman in advance of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 1, 2016. REUTERS

All manner of stories have been written about the Rio Olympics ranging from the village not being ready, the fear of Zika virus and insecurity.

But it now seems most of the stories were exaggerated, or the organisers worked around the clock to ensure that almost everything was in place, after the international media raised the red flag on Rio’s preparedness for the games.

A number of athletes we spoke to seemed not bothered with the stories, saying, so far, they were happy with what they have seen.

“What I have seen here cannot be compared with the Commonwealth Games in Scotland in 2014 where I competed,” Kenyan boxer Rayton Okwiri said.

The Kenyan sevens rugby players and their female counterparts also said they were happy and have no complaints in as far as accommodation at the village is concerned.

“We always travel a lot in the International Rugby Board series and looking at what we have at Rio Olympics, I have no problem with it at all... everything cannot be perfect,” Kenyan rugby seven captain Andrew Amonde said.

Samuel Oliech also said he was happy with the facilities at the village, and had no reason to be worried even though a lot has been written about the organisation of the games.

According to Lucia Kimani, who now runs for Bosnia, the Rio Olympics may not be like the one in Beijing, China in 2008, but that does not mean there is something wrong about it.

“We can never have the perfect games as there will always be teething problems, but so far I have not seen anything that should make me doubt these games will be successful,” Kimani said.

Most of the athletes seemed at ease at the village and a number of them took time to walk around the small park that has been made specifically for them to stroll when they are not training or in their rooms.

Team Australia, which was the first team to complain about the village, were seen walking around the facility and seemed at home.

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