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Team claims Kim Collins went missing for several days before being sent home from Olympics

08/05/2012 02:29 EDT | Updated 10/05/2012 05:12 EDT
LONDON - Former 100-meter world champion Kim Collins went missing for several days before being sent home from the London Olympics, according to a St. Kitts and Nevis team official.

Dennis Knight, vice-president of the Caribbean nation's Olympic committee, said Collins left the athletes village Wednesday to meet his wife, and then failed to make contact again in time to be confirmed Friday for the following day's 100 heats.

"He never properly reported back to camp," Knight told The Associated Press on Sunday. "This meant he missed scheduled practices, and most importantly he did not appear, and did not respond to management and coaches attempt to contact him so his registration could be confirmed here in the village ... I would consider it really non communicative."

Collins claimed Saturday he was punished for seeing his wife after finding the athletes village stressful.

"That is a non-issue," Knight said. "That has nothing to do with the reasons for our action ... the wife is a minor issue."

The sanction meant the 2003 world champion, who carried the St. Kitts and Nevis flag at the opening ceremony, could not compete in his fifth straight Olympics. He was also entered in the 200 and 4x100 relay.

Knight said after the games there will be an investigation to "find out what perhaps was really going on."

"Kim is a super icon for us. He is the one sportsperson that really stands out," Knight said. "I would hope that we could conclude this matter without tarnishing his reputation and his entire career in any way. That is not the intention."

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Rob Harris can be reached at http://twitter.com/RobHarris

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