LONDON, July 24 Briefs from around the London
Olympics on Tuesday:
Britain's Heather Watson has been given a late place in the
women's singles tennis tournament at Wimbledon after the
withdrawal of Ukraine's Alona Bondarenko through injury.
Bondarenko's injury means she and her sister Kateryna have
withdrawn from the doubles.
Australia's Olympic athletes will be walking with the greats
in several senses at Friday's opening ceremony after showing off
shoes and special green jackets bearing the names of all the
country's gold medallists since 1896.
The formal jackets have the names on the lining as do the
shoes. "So you are walking in the footsteps of some of the
greats," said Australian chef de Mission Nick Green.
Former England soccer captain David Beckham, who has not
been selected for Team GB but has been promised a role at the
Games, delighted fans with a surprise appearance in a shopping
mall near the Olympic Park.
Sponsor adidas asked 60 unsuspecting members of the public
to show support for Britain's team by having their picture taken
inside a photobooth - with Beckham then joining them after
stepping out from a hidden section.
Gymnast Louis Smith, the first Briton to win an individual
Olympic gymnastics medal since 1908 after taking pommel horse
bronze in Beijing, has said goodbye to his 12,000 Twitter
followers before entering the athletes village.
"Last night I said goodbye to my followers on Twitter," he
told a news conference. "My phone's gone a bit quiet. I want to
keep the eye on the prize."
If some of Britain's iconic red postboxes turn gold during
the Olympics, it means the host nation is doing well in the
Royal Mail says it will celebrate every British gold medal
by re-painting a postbox in the winner's home town. It will be
the first occasion in modern times that the boxes, painted
standard red since 1874, have changed colour.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Pritha Sarkar)