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Schedule Changes Uncertain for Olympic Swimming, Gymnastics Finals
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The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Beijing Olympic organizers on Wednesday said the schedules of swimming and gymnastics finals of the 2008 Games are still uncertain.

A competition schedule provided by the Beijing Olympic Organizing Committee (BOCOG) at the world press briefing indicates that swimming and gymnastics finals will be held in the morning, instead of at night time as previous Games did.

"The day competition schedule is yet to be confirmed by the IOC," said Sun Weiyi, an official with BOCOG's sports department.

The move from night time to day time was required by US rights holder NBC, which will allow it to air those events live in prime time. Broadcasters in Australia and Asia have protested the change.

The IOC had been expected to decide on this matter in June, but has delayed making its final decision.

Gilbert Felli, IOC Olympic Games Executive Director, said official word is supposed to come from the IOC executive board meeting in November in Kuwait.

"Of course, it will be decided before the end of this year," he said.

Though Chinese swimmers voiced their dissatisfaction over the possible change, BOCOG executive vice-president Jiang Xiaoyu said China will respect the IOC's decision.

"The final say is within the IOC. Whatever the decision is, we will accept and respect it," he said.

(Xinhua News Agency, September 28, 2006)

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