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Poand announces new plan for sport after Olympic failure

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 15.08.2012 06:18
After winning just ten medals at London 2012, Sports Minister Joanna Mucha has said Poland must follow the examples of the UK and Australia if the nation is to realise its sporting potential.

Minister Mucha announces a plan for Polish sport: photo - PAP/Leszek Szymanski

Poland won the same amount of medals as in Beijing four years ago and in Athens in 2004. But Joanna Mucha says that as Poland won just two gold medals this time at the London Olympics, this is the worst performance so far by Poland at the Games.

“I have no doubt that if we do not propose changes to systems of training, this trend will continue,” Minister Mucha told a press conference in Warsaw, Tuesday.

“Over the last few months I have been looking at recovery plans put in place in countries that are now a power in international sport. I looked particularly at the UK and Australia and intend to introduce a similar plan in Poland,” Joanna Mucha said following the disappointing performance by Polish athletes.

“I estimate that we have before us 16 years of work. At super-sprint pace we should see the first results being visible after eight years,” she added.

“In 1996 in Atlanta, the UK won 15 medals, while in London, they won up to 65 medals and 29 gold,” she said.

“From 16 September, meetings [on how to proceed] will take place in all provinces. I'm going to talk with local authorities, coaches and physical education teachers. I want to persuade local governments to shift funds to be spent on [sporting] infrastructure,” Mucha said.

She added that if local authorities to not allocate more funds to sports then revenue from central government will be cut.

She also said that various sporting disciplines will be targeted – as happened in the UK with rowing and cycling – and the performance of athletes will also dictate levels of future funding.

“Sport is a universal priority,” Poland's sports minister emphasised. (pg)

tags: olympics
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