NBA basketball star could miss Games after Drake club brawl

Jun 25, 2012

Olympic gossip: Drake, Chris Brown fight leaves Tony Parker with glass in his eye, more ticket anger

TONY PARKER, French basketball star and San Antonio Spurs guard, could miss the Olympics after he almost lost an eye during the nightclub fight between rapper Drake and Chris Brown in New York earlier this month. Parker underwent surgery to remove a shard of glass from his left eye, reports The Daily Mail, after the fight ten days ago. He was expected to be back after a week's rest, but the team announced on Sunday that Parker was still out, and "may have to withdraw" from the Games. He is to visit a specialist in New York in a last-ditch attempt to get the all-clear. Parker has also filed a lawsuit against the nightclub where the brawl, involving Chris Brown and Drake, took place.

Saudi Arabia will allow female athletes to compete at the Olympics this summer for the first time in its history. There has been "intense international criticism" of Saudi Arabia's previous refusal to allow its women athletes to compete, said The Independent, and human rights groups even called for an "Olympic ban" on Saudi Arabia. The Saudi Embassy in London said the kingdons Olympic Committee would "oversee the participation of women athletes", though currently only 20-year-old showjumper Dalma Rushdi Malhas competes at the Olympic level. There are restrictions, however, to female participation; athletes must dress to "preserve their dignity" with "loose-fitting garments" and scarves covering "hair but not the face".

James Ellington, the sprinter who auctioned himself off on eBay to raise funds to train, was rewarded for his efforts at the Olympic trials this weekend after winning the 200m final. Although the winning bid of £32,500 in the auction was a hoax, men's grooming company King of Shaves stepped in to sponsor him, The Daily Telegraph reports. After five months of sponsored training, including a "warm-weather training camp in the United States",  Ellington "blew away his rivals" at the 200m final at the Olympic trials in Birmingham. "I'm a very determined person," said Ellington, adding that he had simply thought outside the box. Ellington has already achieved the Olympic A qualifying standard, which means, with his win in Birmingham, he is guaranteed a spot on the London 2012 team.

London 2012's ticketing problems have continued as fans reacted angrily to discovering that high-priced seats are much further away from the action than previously thought. It has been revealed through the release of the Olympic seating plans that spectators at some events who had ordered the highest-priced AA and A tickets are seated in low level seats, at times similar to those with cheaper C level tickets, according to The Daily Telegraph. "I am really annoyed," said one fan, "I would have been better off in the cheaper seats". Olympic officials have denied that sponsors have secured more desirable seats but the seating plans do not show where seating for international media and broadcasters, and the VIP seating areas for heads of state, politicians, and Olympic officials is located.

Justin Gatlin and Tyson Gay will both race at London 2012 after securing their spots at the US trials. Gatlin finished first in the men's 100m and Gay achieving second place in the Olympic trials at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. Both Americans have a complicated history with the Games, says The Guardian. Gatlin was given a four-year ban after testing positive for excessive testosterone in 2006, while Gay suffered a hamstring injury four years ago, and underwent hip surgery less than a year ago. Gatlin reminded reporters: "This was only my second race of the year... I couldn't even jog until March." He added that he "was not fazed" by facing Usain Bolt, and pointed out that his lane is "just as long as mine."

Sign up for our daily newsletter