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Athens Games "unforgettable": Rogge

30/08/2004 05:50:51 AM Comments (0)

The Athens Olympics closed and were declared "unforgettable".

International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge declared the Games over but, in contrast to previous Games, the IOC declined to compare them with previous Olympics.

"These Games were unforgettable - dream Games," said Rogge.

Rogge's predecessor Juan Antonio Samaranch traditionally declared each Games "the best ever" - a tag last applied to Sydney.

Rogge instead paid tribute to the "enthusiastic and competent" Athens organisers.

He also made reference to the number of drug cheats caught in Athens.

"These Games were held in peace and brotherhood. These were the Games where it became increasingly difficult to cheat (with drugs) and where clean athletes were better protected."

Speaking amid the party atmosphere of the closing ceremony, Rogge told the Greek audience:"You have won."

His words were sweet music to the Greeks, who defied the doom merchants who said Athens could never pull off the greatest sports show on earth.

"The Olympics came home and we've shown the world the great things Greeks can do," said Athens Games boss Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki.

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