Funding cuts 'could affect Olympic medal tally'

Funding cuts expected to be announced this week could hit Britain's medal hopes at the London 2012 Olympics, it was claimed.













As much as £100m in private sector investment out of a £600m pledge to the Olympic team has failed to materialise. A UK Sport board meeting tomorrow will decide where any cuts may have to be made.



An increase in anticipated Lottery ticket sales has reduced the £100m shortfall to £79m but it could still potentially take the shine off Britain's target for fourth place in the 2012 medals table.



Lord Moynihan, the British Olympic Association chairman, called on Prime Minister Gordon Brown to honour his original 2006 commitment of £100m a year for Olympic sports.



Lord Moynihan said: "To give our Olympic and Paralympic athletes the best chance of success in 2012, the full investment programme agreed by Gordon Brown when he was Chancellor must be honoured in full."



It is believed that various funding packages are being looked at.



If other streams of funding could not be arranged, Hugh Robertson, shadow sports and Olympics spokesman, said he could imagine "in extremis" that the shortfall may be plugged from the Olympic contingency.



He said: "I think there is no option but to take it out of the contingency because to field a substandard British team at the London Olympics is unacceptable."



Team sports could be more at risk as they are seen as more expensive to fund than individual sports.



Handball is a developing sport with increasing participation levels in Britain but it has little chance of a medal at the 2012 Games. They are hoping for an eighth place finish at the London Games.



Alternative training plans in case of a funding cut are already being discussed.



British Handball Association spokesman Paul Bray said: "We have to be realistic. We have to be pragmatic because whatever we face (once funding is decided) is the reality of the situation.



"You cannot by any means maintain the momentum if we lose the funding, but we must not overlook what we have achieved so far because we have achieved so much."



The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) insists there will be more money for London than there was for Beijing.



A DCMS spokesman said: "There was a record amount of public funding for Beijing, helping our Olympians' and Paralympians' fantastic performance in finishing fourth and second in the medal tables respectively.



"The public funding package for elite athletes for London 2012 will be more than Beijing, and we are continuing to work hard with UK Sport and Fast Track to raise additional funding from the private sector in a tough economic climate."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
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.

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'