Mirela Manjani of Greece celebrates winning the javelin gold medal (© Getty Images)
Greece, as expected from the Olympic host nation, has confirmed a huge athletics team for the Athens Games.
A team of 63 men and women, the biggest ever team for Greece in the history of Olympic Games, is going to compete in the Athens Olympic Stadium, in their home country.
All athletes who set standards according to the IAAF rules are included in the squad, while 5 more athletes will have the possibility to be added to the team in the coming days, if they reach the qualifying marks before August 8.
The team includes all top Greek athletes who won medals in the Sydney Olympics and Paris World Championships, as well as some rising stars among which is the new 400m Hurdles sensation, Fani Halkia, the race walkers Athanassia Tsoumeleka and Athina Papayianni, and the long jumper Louis Tsatoumas.
According to the Federation, they hope at least 15 athletes to reach the finals of their respective events.
The only top athlete who won’t participate in the Games is the javelin thrower Kostas Gatsioudis. Facing serious injuries during the last two years, Gatsioudis has announced his decision to abandon his effort for this year
“After all these injuries, the time I had to return was not enough. I lost a great chance, but I won’t stop. Now I have to give up thinking of what it happened and start preparing for my next participation in the World Championships next year”, he said to the Greek television yesterday.
The Greek team
100m - Georgios THEODORIDIS, Christoforos CHOIDIS
200m - Konstantinos KENTERIS, Anastassios GOUSSIS, Panayotis SARRIS
400m - Anastassios GOUSSIS, Stylianos DIMOTSIOS
800m - Panayotis STROUBAKOS
1500m - Panayotis STROUBAKOS
Marathon - Nikolaos POLLIAS
110mh - Dimitrios PIETRIS
400mh - Periklis IAKOVAKIS
20km walk - Eleftherios THANOPOULOS
50km walk - Georgios ARGYROPOULOS, Spyridon KASTANIS, Theodoros STAMATOPOULOS
4X400m - Periklis IAKOVAKIS, Anastassios GOUSSIS, Panayotis SARRIS, Stylianos DIMOTSIOS, Georgios DOUPIS, Dimitrios GRAVALOS
Decathlon - Prodromos KORKIZOGLOU
Pole Vault - Marios EVAGGELOU
Long Jump - Louis TSATOUMAS, Dimitrios FILINDRAS, Dimitrios SERELIS
Triple Jump - Christos MELETOGLOU
Discus Throw - Savvas PANAVOGLOU
Hammer Throw - Alexandros PAPADIMITRIOU
100m - Ekaterini THANOU
200m - Olga KAIDATZI
400m - Chrisa GOUDENOUDI
1500m - Konstantina EFENTAKI
5000m - Chrisostomia IAKOVOU
Marathon - Georgia AMBATZIDOU
100mh - Flora REDOUMI
400mh - Fani HALKIA
20km walk - Athanassia TSOUMELEKA, Athina PAPAYIANNI, Christina KOKOTOU
4x100m - Ekaterini THANOU, Georgia KOKLONI, Marina VASSARMIDOU, Efrosini PATSOU, Maria KARASTAMATI
4x400m - Chrisa GOUDENOUDI, Olga KAIDATZI, Fani HALKIA, Dimitra DOVA, Chariklia BOUDA, Georgia KOUMNAKI
Heptathlon - Argyro STRATAKI
High Jump - Niki MITROPOULOU
Pole Vault - Georgia TSILIGGIRI, Afroditi SKAFIDA
Long Jump - Niki XANTHOU, Ioanna KAFETZI, Stella PILATOU
Triple Jump - Chrisopigi DEVETZI, Athanassia PERRA, Olga VASDEKI
Shot Put - Kalliopi OUZOUNI, Irene TERZOGLOU
Discus Throw - Ekaterini VOGOLI, Anastassia KELESIDOU, Stella TSIKOUNA
Hammer Throw - Alexandra PAPAGEORGIOU, Stella PAPADOPOULOU, Evdokia TSAMOGLOU
Javelin Throw - Mirela MANJANI, Angeliki TSIOLAKOUDI, Savva LIKA