A recent report from MoreThanTheGames.co.uk has indicated that England is closely monitoring the possibility of terror threats in Delhi and the potential withdrawal of the field hockey team from the upcoming World Cup. Later in the story they go on to speak about England’s withdrawal from the badminton World Championships this past summer, and go so far as to say England will likely NOT be fielding a team to the Commonwealth Games.
Security problems have plagued the country in recent years with terrorist threats forcing the England badminton team to withdraw from last year’s World Championships in Hyderabad. Also, senior Whitehall officials admitted in January there was ‘virtually no chance’ of England sending a team to October’s Commonwealth Games in Delhi.
Reports from the Daily Mail in December seem to mirror this story as several athletes have started to state their intentions to skip the games for a myriad of reasons.
Some of the nation’s greatest medal hopes are citing excuses ranging from ‘bad timing’ to ‘the risk of tummy bugs’ to avoid going to the tournament in Delhi.
There are even reports that the entire England squad could pull out over worries that the athletes could become a target for terrorist attacks.
Tensions in the region have made India volatile. Gunmen ran amok in Mumbai last year, shooting Westerners and killing 170 people, while in March fundamentalists murdered eight Pakistanis in a gun attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore.
If England does decide to pull out of the games it would be the first time ever in the 80 year history of the games.