Gymnastics, as ever, produce a plethora of dramatic moments at the Olympic games.
With the discipline demanding the pinnacle of sporting technique and skill, it’s one of the most viewed events at summer games. In addition, with stars such as Simone Biles on show, Rio 2016 will prove little different.
However, one Dutch gymnast has seen this year’s programme produce a dramatic incident of quite a different nature. In fact, the 33-year-old has been sent home for his spectacularly inconsiderate actions.
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Yuri van Gelder’s Olympic games got off to the perfect start. The Dutchman successfully qualified for the finals of the rings events and thus gave himself a chance of winning gold.
However, the 33-year-old celebrated the good news in an inappropriately flamboyant manner.
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Despite being well aware of the strict team rules, Van Gelder spent the night partying in Rio. While he did eventually return to the Olympic village, it was in the very early hours of Sunday morning.
Not only did this violate guidelines on alcohol consumption, but rules implemented by the Netherlands team as regards entering Rio itself. In light of safety concerns over the city, the movement of athletes from the village is highly monitored.
Consequently, in breaking these regulations, Van Gelder has been expelled from the games. Dutch team chef de mission Maurits Hendrik released the following statement: "It's terrible for Yuri, but this kind of behaviour is unacceptable."
"In sports terms this is a disaster, but we had no other choice given the violation of our values."
However, this isn’t the first time that Van Gelder has stirred up controversy.
The 2005 rings world champion was banned by the Dutch Gymnastics Union for the use of cocaine in 2009. What made the incident all the more astonishing was the fact the 33-year-old had taken the illegal drug just three days before the national championships.
Talented gymnast maybe, but around big sporting events, Van Gelder seems to take some rather questionable lifestyle choices. In ignominious fashion, the Dutchman’s Olympic campaign has ended rather prematurely.
Do you think the Dutch team were right to expel Van Gelder ? Have YOUR say in the comment box below
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