Swimming: Holiday for German who gave up final

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The Independent Online
DAGMAR HASE will get a two-week holiday anywhere she chooses for giving up her place in a World Championship final, enabling fellow- German Franziska van Almsick to win a gold medal, the head of the German swimming team said yesterday.

Hase, the eighth-fastest in Tuesday's 200m freestyle heats in Rome, sacrificed her place in the final to Van Almsick, who had failed to qualify as only ninth overall. Van Almsick, the European champion, won the final and broke the world record in the process.

'We considered how we could reward but not pay her,' Klaus Henter, the president of the German Swimming Association, said. 'Dagmar Hase will get a trip, two weeks holiday and an airline ticket. She can pick a place on the globe.'

Henter said this did not mean Hase was being paid for pulling out of the race. The German team manager, Ralf Beckmann, said nobody apart from swimmer and coach had been involved in the decision.

The team will also receive an extra dollars 32,000 ( pounds 21,000) from their sponsors. It doubles the amount set aside for medal and high-placing bonuses.