Warning on Atlanta `hell'

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Olympic Games

Britain's Olympic contenders were warned yesterday of the conditions they will have to face at next summer's Atlanta Games. The 350-strong team were told to expect "hellish" heat and humidity in America's Deep South next July.

Britain's women's fencing captain, Fiona McIntosh, who has been to the last three Games in Barcelona, Seoul and Los Angeles, said: "The city itself is fine, but it is utterly revolting to train and compete in.

"I have never been in such an environment. It hits you just stepping out of the door. Even competing in air-conditioned halls leaves you dehydrated. Barcelona was bad enough. This will be hell."