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RIO 2016

RIO

IOC President snubs Rio Paralympics

International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach, who did not attend the opening ceremony of the Rio Paralympics on Wednesday, has no plans to travel to Brazil "at this present time," the IOC said.

IOC President snubs Rio Paralympics
Thomas Bach at the Olympics closing ceremony. Photo: Odd Andersen/AFP

It's the first time since 1984 that a president of the IOC — based in Lausanne — has failed to be at an opening ceremony and there are suggestions that the no-show has to do with divisions over the Paralympic committee's outright ban on Russian athletes.
   
Local media also said that Brazilian authorities wanted to hear from Bach on the case of top Irish Olympic official Patrick Hickey, who was arrested at dawn on August 17th at a luxury Rio hotel over an alleged ticket scam.
   
Bach had instead been scheduled to attend a mourning ceremony for the late West German president Walter Scheel that meant he could not attend the opening gala in Rio “as originally planned”, the IOC said in remarks to AFP.
   
“At this present time there are no plans for the president to travel to Brazil,” it added.
   
And addressing the reports in Globo and other local media that Brazilian authorities want to talk to Bach about Hickey, the IOC said: “The IOC cannot comment on a newspaper story nor on the ongoing legal procedure against Mr Hickey for whom the presumption of innocence prevails.
   
“For the IOC it goes without saying that it will cooperate on this matter.”

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OLYMPICS

Olympics: ‘Super Dario’ wins Switzerland its first gold medal in South Korea

Dario Cologna has made Olympic history by winning the men’s 15km cross-country freestyle ski event for the third time in a row.

Olympics: ‘Super Dario’ wins Switzerland its first gold medal in South Korea
Dario Cologna celebrates on the podium. Photo: Odd Andersen/AFP
Cologna crossed the line 18 seconds ahead of Norway’s Simen Hegstad Krueger to take the gold medal in Pyeongchang, retaining the title he also won in Vancouver and Sochi.  
 
The 31-year-old from the Val Müstair in the canton of Graubünden becomes the first cross-country skier to win a hat trick in the same event. 
 
 
Now with a total of four gold medals to his name – he also won the skiathlon in Sochi – he also becomes Switzerland’s joint most successful Winter Olympian, along with ski jumper Simon Ammann. 
 
Also on Friday, Wendy Holdener became the first female Swiss skier in 24 years to win a medal in women's slalom when she took silver.