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Last Updated: Monday, 15 January 2007, 11:51 GMT
GB and Australia agree 2012 deal
Computer generated image of London's proposed Olympic riverside park
Britain and Australia have struck a deal to help both nations compete against the "sporting superstate" of China at the 2012 London Olympics.

The deal will see Australian athletes compete in events in London before 2012 and British youngsters take part in the Australian Youth Olympics.

British Olympic Association chief Simon Clegg said nations had to join forces to tackle China's medal potential.

"In sporting terms, actually, we're all at war against China," he said.

"We're seeing the emergence of a sporting superstate and it's quite frightening for all the other nations in terms of their preparations and expectations for the 2008 Games."

China finished second on the medals table at the last Olympics in Athens but are expected to finish way ahead in Beijing next year.

The agreement with the BOA's Australian counterparts was signed in Sydney prior to the start of the Australian Youth Olympics, where more than 100 promising young British athletes will compete.

China have a 300-strong team at this week's festival in Sydney and Clegg said he would be watching them closely.

"It's going to be very interesting to see not only their traditional areas of strength but also whether they're going to be picking up in areas where they've been less strong in recent history," he said.



SEE ALSO
Sporting hopefuls set for Sydney
19 Dec 06 |  Other Sport...
China expects more medals in 2008
15 Dec 06 |  Sport Homepage
Olympic funding
11 Apr 06 |  Olympics 2012


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