Georgian tennis players barred from Olympics due to brutal paperwork error

·2 min read
STUTTGART, GERMANY - APRIL 21:   Ekaterine Gorgodze of Georgia reacts to a missed point on day 5 of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix match between Angelique Kerber of Germany and Ekaterine Gorgodze of Georgia at Porsche Arena on April 21, 2021 in Stuttgart, Germany.  (Photo by Philipp Guelland - Pool/Getty Images)
Ekaterine Gorgodze was a victim of a brutal administrative error at the Olympics. (Photo by Philipp Guelland - Pool/Getty Images)

Georgia’s women’s doubles tennis team had their Olympic dream dashed before it even began thanks to a paperwork error by their home country.

Oksana Kalashnikova and Ekaterine Gorgodze, the two athletes barred from the Games, were informed by the Georgia Olympic committee prior to travelling to Japan that “their application had been submitted.”

Unfortunately for the duo, that was not actually the case, and nothing was entered on their behalf.

With no official submission into the Games, the pair made a last-ditch effort to keep their Tokyo 2020 hopes alive by taking their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

The CAS denied their appeal Saturday, stating that because no formal entry was submitted on behalf of the women, that the “consequence, however unfortunate for the two athletes, can only be the dismissal of their petition.”

Tennis writer Ben Rothenberg explained that the two athletes could potentially sue the Georgian Olympic Committee because of the mistake.

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Rothenberg also explained that another thing working against Kalashnikova and Gorgodze was the fact that there wasn’t even a spot for them in the women’s doubles draw should their appeal be accepted.

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Disappointingly, this is not the first administrative error that has caused athletes to pack their bags before even competing at these Olympics.

Last week, six Polish athletes were sent home after an unfortunate oversight caused the country to send too many swimmers.

With Day 1 officially underway, let us hope the last of these absurd errors are behind us.

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