New Delhi, Aug 25: Calming the country's nerves over the numbers of international athletes pulling out of the Commonwealth Games 2010, the Organising Committee chief, Suresh Kalmadi has said that the sports stars' withdrawals will not affect the success of the Delhi Games.
There will be plenty of world champions in action, Mr Kalmadi assured in an interview with a news agency, adding that the athletes who have withdrawn have do so due to injuries.
To a question if the pullouts should be a cause of concern, the OC boss answered, “No, not at all. Because many top world class stars are coming. A few are not coming because of injury."
Taking the example of Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, who was among the first to withdraw from CWG 2010, Kalmadi said, “Bolt has not gone in the last four five events because he was not well. Whether anybody will come or not will be known only on Sep 3 when the countries will give their entries by name. Entry by general category has been going on."
“Lots of world champions are coming. Few have backed out not because of any other reason but injury. Stephanie Rice has backed out because she was injured. Shelly Ann-Fraser was caught in a dope case. Chris Hoy"s taking part in Olympics depends on that event (European Championships)," added Kalmadi, who is also the Indian Olympic Association chief.
Stating that it was ok if stars don't make it to the tournament as new stars will be born in the Oct 2010 event, he said, “Anyway, if somebody is not coming, a new champion, a new star will come up. Bolt is not coming but other athletes who are just 0.02 or 0.03 different (in timing) will come.
"So new champions will happen, I am happy with that. The 71 Chefs de Mission who have come here were happy with the Games so they have told us that most of their athletes are coming."
A final list of participating athletes will be available on Sep 3 when the countries would submit the entries by name.