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Olympic swimmer calls for IOC support after family becomes victim of ticketing scam

Featured Image: Serena Repice Lentini on Unsplash

An Olympic swimmer has called on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to do more to help families of competing athletes secure tickets to events, after his parents lost money in a scam. 

British Olympic freestyle gold medallist Matt Richards explained that his parents had been conned out of £2,500 (€3,000/$3,200) after trying to buy tickets to watch him compete in the Paris Olympic Games this summer.

Richards will compete in six events at the Games, which will begin on July 26 and run until August 11.

As per a report from Reuters, Richards posted on his Instagram story with a statement addressed to @Olympics.

He wrote: “I do find it crazy that when competing at an Olympic Games, the families of the athletes have to source and fund tickets themselves. My family and I are looking at a bill of thousands of pounds spent on tickets, just to see me swim in a couple of sessions this summer.

“Given that you won’t pay the athletes who compete in the event (that creates billions every year in revenue) due to it ‘not being the Olympic spirit’… do you not think it’s time that you support the families of the people competing, by giving them tickets to the events that their family members are competing in?”

Richards added: “Seeing your family or friends compete at an Olympic Games shouldn’t be reserved for the people that have thousands to spare, who can afford to come and watch.

“I think it’s time that (IOC president) Thomas Bach and the IOC start taking care of their athletes and not just their shareholders.”

The IOC is a non-governmental and not-for-profit organisation that is the governing body of the National Olympic Committees, as well as the worldwide Olympic Movement.

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