May 30, 2024
Six Polish swimmers sent back home from Tokyo following admin error

Six Polish swimmers sent back home from Tokyo following admin error

“I would like to express my great regret, sadness, and bitterness at the situation,” PZP director Pawel Slominski said in a statement released Monday.

Alicja Tchórz, Aleksandra Polańska, Mateusz Chowaniec, Dominika Kossakowska, Jan Hołub and Bartosz Piszczorowicz, who were forced to return from Tokyo, called for the organization’s entire board to resign immediately over the incident in an open letter addressed to the PZP director Slominski.

The open letter issued Sunday was signed by 16 other Polish swimmers and accused the PZP of not understanding FINA’s regulations.

“Recent incidents have destroyed the trust,” Polish swimmers, who returned home on Sunday, said in the open letter.

“Several of us had to come back to Poland because of the neglect, and our dream of becoming Olympians have been taken away from us,” they added.

In this April 26, 2021, file photo, Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organizing staff prepare a swimming test event at the Tokyo Aquatics Center, one of the venues of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, in Tokyo.

‘Unprecedented event’

The original Polish team comprised 23 members who traveled to Tokyo to take part in the Olympic Games.

“The actions of the Association led to an unprecedented event in the history of Polish sport,” the letter reads.

“In addition, Polish swimming — both in the eyes of the public and potential sponsors — has been exposed as a laughingstock, and it will have a glaring effect on all competitors who compete in the white and red colors on a daily basis,” the letter adds.

Poland’s Culture and Sports Ministry urged the PZP president “to immediately submit explanations” over the incident, according to a statement published by the government body on Monday.

The ministry will analyze, and consequences are coming after games, the statement said.