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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 June, 2004, 17:26 GMT 18:26 UK
Olympic stadium christened
Competitors running at the Olympic Stadium
Problems in the build-up to the Games seem to have been overcome
The brand new Olympic stadium in Athens has passed its first test since renovation work began two years ago.

Greek athletes have been competing on the first day of the three-day national championships just 64 days before the start of the Games in August.

Olympic 200m champion Kostas Kederis won the first race, coming home in 10.72 seconds in his 100m heat.

The trial is a boost to organisers who are battling to get work completed in time for the opening ceremony.

Although there is still plenty to do inside the stadium, organisers are now hoping that the worst of the problems which have dogged the Olympic preparations are behind them.

Work continued as the competition took place in the stadium with workers concentrating on attaching panels to the enormous roof wings.

One of the two state-of-the-art scoreboards was in working order, quickly flashing up Katerina Thanou's 100m heat-winning time of 11.56s.

"The stadium is impressive and all conditions are excellent for the Greek National Championships," said Thanou.

"I strongly believe that everything will be ready on time for the Olympic Games."

In an attempt to get the outside of the stadium completed before 13 August, plans for landscaping the area with trees and flowers have been abandoned although massive efforts are being made to complete a new road and car parks.





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