Ceremony for Adams probably months away
Tue, 14 Aug 2012 6:09p.m.
By Jane Luscombe
Olympic shot put champion Valerie Adams wants a proper medal ceremony, with all the trimmings she deserves – but there's a problem.
As chef de mission Dave Currie put it, that gold medal is currently somewhere in the backblocks of Belarus, and it's going to take an Olympic effort to sort it out.
The NZOC reckons it will be months before she gets her hands on it. It's the same frustrating wait experienced by Nick Willis when his 1500m bronze became silver after a drug test at the Beijing Games.
"It took ages, and we wouldn't expect this would be any quicker," says Currie. "She's gone back to Belarus and now they've got to get it back, so I wouldn't be planning on anything any time soon really."
It's not easy rustling up a brand new medal either.
"The IOC doesn't keep a cupboard of gold medals to hand out on these occasions, and there's likely to be some delay," says Sport and Recreation Minister Murray McCully.
But that hasn't stopped speculation about a special event for Adams.
Willis tweeted: "Val should now get a gold medal ceremony at Eden Park."
Auckland Mayor Len Brown used to share a gym with Adams. He says there are plenty of possibilities for a ceremony, including in South Auckland or at the Cloud on the waterfront.
"The most important thing is, whatever the site, there's an opportunity because she missed her opportunity with being presented the gold at the greatest games on Earth," says Mr Brown.
A Belarussian website says there must have been a misunderstanding, and their woman is still the champion in their eyes – but Adams' team-mates are having none of that.
"She's had her moment of glory taken away from her, but I'm sure the whole of New Zealand will embrace what she's done and we know that she's number one," says Emma Twigg.
"Prising the gold back from her rival's hands isn't the only constraint on a celebration. Adams has seven more competitions before she comes home, and isn't due back here until October.
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14/08/2012 7:30:24 p.m.
Helena Hamlin wrote:
Wouldn't it be wonderful if Valarie Adams was awarded her Gold Medal by the Queen. It would be such a lovely gesture for all the three medalists.
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