The prospect of Aaron Cook winning an Olympic reprieve moved a significant step closer yesterday when the British Olympic Association asked GB Taekwondo to reconsider its selection for this summer's Games.
Cook, who is today expected to be named world No 1 when the rankings are updated, was overlooked by the sport's governing body, who preferred Lutalo Muhammad despite him being ranked a lowly 56th. The BOA has told GB Taekwondo to "reconvene" its selection panel "at the earliest opportunity".
The BOA will also send an independent observer to the meeting. The BOA cannot demand that Cook, who finished fourth in Beijing, be selected, only refuse to sanction the sport's choice of athlete.
The decision to omit Cook has been seen as political. Last year the 21-year-old left the governing body's high performance programme to undertake his own training regime. Of the five-strong selection panel, two voted in Muhammad's favour, one in Cook's and two abstained.
Yesterday the BOA's statement pointedly recorded "all members of the selection committee who have a right to vote are in fact encouraged to do so." The BOA also suggested that each of the athletes in question should be allowed to make representations to the panel via his coach.
GB Taekwondo has yet to agree to what the BOA terms a "request" and will first decide whether to appeal "in the next 24 hours." A statement from GB Taekwondo said: "We have been subject to a judicial process that has prevented us from saying more in the public arena than we would want."
Cook's exclusion is said to be based on a suggestion that he is more vulnerable than Muhammad to a new method of scoring head shots. "A disproportionate amount of emphasis should not be given to the so-called head-shot rule," said the BOA.
Cook, who has received notable support from current and former Olympians ranging from Sir Steve Redgrave to Tom Daley, tweeted last night: "Thanks to all the public, fellow athletes and legends for your support. If given the chance, I will make GB proud."
Olympic news you may have missed...
Hannah England, the surprise 1500m silver medal winner at the World Championships in Daegu last summer, is struggling to make the Olympic trials next month after being badly spiked in her first international race of the summer.
The Oxford City athlete won the metric mile at the Fanny Blankers-Koen Games at Hengelo in the Netherlands on Sunday but at the cost of an injury that required hospitalisation.
"Hannah got a spike in her achilles tendon and will be out for a number of weeks," Charles van Commenee, the head coach of UK Athletics, said yesterday. "It's not good news. It's a worry.
"She's had no surgery but she had to be in hospital a few days. We're using all the modern technology to get the wound healing so that she picks up training quickly.
"She'll try to get back for the trials. We're working towards that scenario, but it's impossible to predict."
England posted the news on her Facebook fanpage, saying: "Got some battle scars from being spiked. No stitches but will have some cool scars! Taking it easy this week to avoid infection and reduce risk of lingering problems."
What's coming up...
Today & tomorrow In a probable preview of the Olympic 110m hurdle final, Cuban gold medallist Dayron Robles faces 2008 poster boy Liu Xiang and bronze medallist David Oliver at the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League meeting in Eugene, Oregon.
GB men's hockey side Put 3-2 loss to Argentina behind them by beating New Zealand 2-1 and drawing with South Korea 1-1 in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup.
Germany Sending lowest number of athletes – 380 – to a Games since 1990 reunification.
Headlines Newsview all
Amanda Holden at the centre of Twitter backlash as she sends daughter to school dressed as Pretty Woman prostitute for fancy dress day
A parenting group has slammed TV star Amanda Holden for posting a picture of her nine-year-old daughter 'dressed as a prostitute' online.The Britain's Got Talent ... Full story
Grandmother filmed confronting militants and branding them 'devils' before quoting verses in the Koran that forbid slaughter
An incredible video has emerged showing the moment an elderly woman bravely confronted two Islamic State militants, telling them their terror group is cursed and ... Full story
Jobseeker shocked to be sent rudest rejection email ever calling him an 'old, aesthetically challenged professional pr*** with no teeth'
A jobseeker was shocked after he was branded as 'irritating', 'rude' and 'obnoxious' in a cutting email accidentally sent to him by a prospective employer.James ... Full story
Rate this article
MOST POPULAR ON CAPITALBAY
What a washout! Heavy rain forces play to be suspended in The Open at St Andrews after lightning and 50mph winds hit Britain... and there's more on the way
Conditions halt play before first group had even finished first hole on second day of championship in FifeDownpour saw torrent of water gushing down ...
It happened on the A24 at Findon, West Sussex, at about 8.30pm, last nightSuspect got out of car in front and knifed driver in other ...
Furious holiday goers complained of long queues at Heathrow's Terminal 2Passengers claimed 'chaos' due to self-service machines running out of paperHappened as 3,000 people descended on ...
Son of NHS doctor from Middlesbrough helped to recruit up to 18 fellow medical students to join Isis
Mohammed Fakhri Al-Khabass' father ran a GP practice on Teesside25-year-old grew up in Middlesbrough but went to university in SudanHe then radicalised other ...
Pictured: The tattered party dress, dirty shorts and ripped t-shirt found next to a child's body and a battered suitcase by the side of a road
Police release images of suitcase and clothes found with dead childA girl's black dress, undergarments, and a girl's shoe were picturedGender of the child still ...
Shocking footage shows Russian-backed rebels rifle through belongingsThey initially believed they had shot down a Ukrainian fighter jet Donetsk People's Republic and Kremlin have always denied responsibility 298 passengers and crew ...
Mayor says children must be kept inside between 2pm and 5pm and tells town to be quiet as it becomes the first in Spain to have an official afternoon nap time
Joan Faus Vitoria, mayor of Ador in Valencia, has brought in official siestasFor three hours every day, locals are able to return home and go to ...
Arnold Holle urged Germans not to send children to UK public schoolsInvestment banker spent 'seven-figure' sending all four of his childrenBut said pupils learn same ...
Chief Inspector Paul Cahill allegedly found slumped over wheel of his carOfficers searching vehicle found MDMA, mephedrone and controlled sedativeCahill was on way to court to ...
Prince Harry is at front line of a war against the illegal trade in rhino horn Royal is raising awareness of a deaths of thousands of ...