London 2012: Dutch judo bronze medallist emerges as unlikely hero after 'beating' man who tried to disrupt men's 100m final


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The Independent Online

A Dutch judo bronze medallist was emerging as an unlikely heroine of the Olympics last night after delivering a hefty thwack to an abusive man who tried to disrupt the 100m final by tossing a plastic bottle at the world’s fastest men.

Edith Bosch, who was watched the showpiece final after coming third in her own event, said she shoved the man hard for dishonouring the Games after the bottle landed on track just behind the finalists as they moved to the ‘set’ position before the starting gun was fired. The leading contenders said that the incident failed to distract them before Usain Bolt stormed to victory in a new Olympic record. All but one of the finalists finished with a time under ten seconds.

Lord Coe, the chairman of the London organising committee, suggested that it was “poetic justice” that the man happened to be sitting next to Ms Bosch before he was dragged from the stadium by security staff.

“I had seen the man walking around earlier and said to people around me that he was a peculiar bloke,” Ms Bosch, 32, told Dutch television station NOS TV. “Then he threw that bottle and in my emotion I hit him on the back with the flat of my hand. Then he was scooped up by the security. However, he did make me miss the final, and I am very sad about that. I just cannot understand how someone can do something like that.”

Ms Bosch’s role in the affair was revealed when she announced on Twitter after the final that ”a drunken spectator threw a bottle onto the track! I HAVE BEATEN HIM... unbelievable.“

Twitter was abuzz yesterday with admiration for the sportswoman – and support for her ambition to secure tickets to see Bolt in action for the 200 metres.

Ashley Gill-Webb, from South Milford, Leeds, denied a public order offence when he appeared in court yesterday. Mr Gill-Webb who wore a white T-shirt with the slogan ”Veni, Vidi, Vino“ was charged with using threatening words and behaviour. He was bailed on condition that he did not enter any Olympic venue including the whole of the Olympic Park. He will face trial next month.