Commonwealth Games crisis eases

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

The Commonwealth Games appeared to be pulled back from the brink of collapse today after the Scotland and Wales teams announced they had been heartened by the latest developments in New Delhi.





A series of guarantees about safety and improvements to the athletes' village have been made by organisers while the Delhi Government, under the leadership of chief minister Sheila Dikshit, has agreed to put in place "concerted action" to resolve the problems.



Scotland team officials will confirm tomorrow whether their athletes will fly out as planned on Saturday. At least eight major countries have already expressed their reservations over the October 3-14 event in the Indian capital.



Team Scotland's representative Jon Doig said: "We are heartened that Sheila Dikshit has personally taken control of the situation and ensuring that the necessary additional resources are brought in, including support from the Delhi hoteliers association to address standards of cleanliness and hygiene and oversee quality control.



"We have continued to make progress addressing the maintenance and operational issues within our own accommodation block and things are looking much better.



"Therefore subject to a number of assurances from the organising committee being realised over the next 24 hours, we feel we will be in a position to confirm tomorrow that our team will travel as scheduled on Saturday."



The assurances include accommodation maintenance, plus proof that all structural safety certificates for both the village and the venues are in place, backed with full insurance cover through the Delhi 2010 Organising Committee.



The Scottish athletes due to travel on Saturday are competitors in archery, lawn bowls, shooting, tennis and weightlifting. Plans are currently being made to reschedule those who were due to travel today from rugby sevens, boxing and wrestling.



The Wales team said they had been given confidence by organisers' assurances.



A statement from Team Wales said: "The Commonwealth Games Federation has received assurances from the Delhi 2010 organising committee that all venues and village are fit for purpose. We are confident in the assurances that have been provided. The advance party will now be moving into our accommodation and we look forward to welcoming our athletes in the coming days."



Commonwealth Games Wales president Anne Ellis told Sky Sports News: "We asked for extra documentation to make sure the facilities, including the village, were fit for purpose and safe for athletes to live and compete in, and we have had that from the Commonwealth Games Federation and the organising committee today.



"We are satisfied that everything is all systems go and we are looking forward to going to Delhi.



"A week ago it was like a building site, although most of it was cosmetic work there were serious problems with plumbing and electricity.



"But that wasn't in the village .The food zone has been ready for some time, the international zone has been up and running and our tower block, which we went into last week with our advance party, has been turned round and is now comfortable for our athletes."



Lalit Bhanot, the secretary general of the Delhi organising committee, remains confident the Games will be a success.



Bhanot, who on Tuesday caused a media storm by referring to western standards of hygiene as being different from the host nation's, insisted all possible efforts were being made to bring the athletes' village up to scratch.



He told Press Association Sport: "The government along with the organising committee have made all efforts to get the place up to the standard that is desirable.



"Everything is fine. We have seen the work that has gone on in the past few days and you will see that the standard will be brought to the desired level."



Earlier a prominent member of the Games organising committee apologised for a "collective failure" in preparations.



On a day when Commonwealth Games Federation president Michael Fennell was due to hold crisis talks on the Games with Indian Government officials, the organising committee's treasurer AK Mattoo admitted to failings.



Apart from "filthy" living conditions in the athletes' village, a bridge linking a car park and the main stadium collapsed on Tuesday - injuring up to 23 workers - and yesterday further fears were raised when part of a ceiling in the weightlifting arena fell in.



Mattoo said: "I apologise for whatever has happened, whether directly or indirectly by us or by one of the stakeholders in this event.



"I genuinely feel sorry for whatever has happened and would like to apologise not only on the part of the OC [organising committee] but everybody else who is committed. This is a collective failure."



The New Zealand team confirmed today their departure for India would be delayed but chef de mission Dave Currie remains optimistic the Games will go ahead after a meeting with Dikshit.



Currie said: "She is in charge... now we wait to see the process and evidence that things can be rectified. There has been a lot of talk, now we want evidence.



"But she has brought leadership and a layer of administration to act. They have brought in some resources because there have been a lot of people milling around not being effective.



"There is some hope now. I'm more optimistic now that someone has taken ownership. But it's a bit like trying to stop the Titanic and putting it in another direction."



South Africa plan to send their team as planned, despite the concerns over the readiness of Delhi.

News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

EYFS, KS1, KS2 Teachers

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to be part ...

class teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: a small rural school, is ...

Year 1 Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: They want their school to ...

Year 5/6 Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to work in ...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star