Hooper focused on Delhi Games

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Mike Hooper, the chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Federation, has dismissed speculation that New Delhi could be replaced as host of the 2010 Games by Manchester or Melbourne, writes Joseph Verney.

The UK and Australian cities staged successful editions of the Commonwealth Games in 2002 and 2006 respectively, but preparations are not going smoothly in the Indian capital of New Delhi ahead of next year's event. Indian sports minister Manohar Singh Gill recently admitted that there had been some difficulties at a number of venue developments for the Games, and security concerns have also been raised. Hooper told The Sport Briefing: "The 2010 Commonwealth Games will be in Delhi next year and there has never been any suggestion, despite the Australian press speculation, that we've had secret discussions or put people on standby. It's simply not true. The Games will be here (in Delhi) and whatever the security envelope that is needed and required to facilitate the running of the Games in a secure environment will be put in place. If that means lockdown, that's what it means. I genuinely hope it doesn't because it takes away from the atmosphere and everything but whatever it means it will be put in place by the authorities here. "Hooper also made it clear that he is satisfied with Glasgow's preparations to bring the 2014 Games to Scotland. John Scott has been appointed chief executive of Glasgow 2014 and is already building his team ahead of the event in five years' time. "Obviously we're in the early stages for Glasgow but a lot of work has been done, and a lot of work was actually done before they were awarded the rights to host the Games, " Hooper added. "One of the things that we introduced for the 2014 cycle was much more stringent requirements in clarification on venues, the levels of support from the government and the fees that were required. To be honest when they lost the bid (for the 2010 edition, which was awarded to Vancouver in Canada) they were at a stage where many organising committees are a year after getting the Games, and that's positive. "Hooper continued: "John (Scott) has come on board, he's now building his team and they're working really closely with the Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Government in regard to the delivery of the venues and venue planning. The Village contract has recently been announced up there in Glasgow and when you think about it and the country's environment and the economic climate that we're in, it's great that they've managed to do that. They've got that locked down now and will continue working with the developer so I'm pretty pleased with the level of progress. "Meanwhile, Tennis Australia (TA) president Geoff Pollard has welcomed the International Tennis Federation's (ITF) decision not to impose further penalties on the organisation after it forfeited a scheduled Davis Cup by BNP Paribas (sponsor) Asia/Oceania Zone Group I third round tie in India. TA, citing security concerns, failed in an appeal to shift the tie against India on May 8–10 out of Chennai. TA's decision could have seen Australia suspended from the Davis Cup, but the ITF board has declined to impose tougher sanctions after India appealed a previous ruling by the governing body's Davis Cup committee. About The Sport Briefing This story has been reproduced with the kind permission of The Sport Briefing. The Sport Briefing is published by PA Sport and can be found at: www. thesportbriefing. comThe Sport Briefing is updated as and when news happens, from across the global business of sport. The industry's biggest stories have an accompanying email alert, and The Sport Briefing sends subscribers a daily digest to give them an easy–to–read overview of the day's main events. Contact rory. squires@thesportbriefing. com for more information.

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