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Olympic Organisers Issue Apology After Ukraine Athletes Are Introduced As 'Russia' During Medal Ceremony

Olympic Organisers Issue Apology After Ukraine Athletes Are Introduced As 'Russia' During Medal Ceremony

Awkward. Very awkward indeed.

Max Sherry

Max Sherry

Mixing up Canadians with Americans isn't a great idea, nor is confusing New Zealanders with us Aussies.

But as far as country mix-ups go, it's hard to get much offensive than calling someone from Ukraine a 'Russian'.


Olympic organisers have been forced to issue a public apologise after an absolute clanger made everyone inside the Tokyo swimming arena feeling very awkward.

During the official medal ceremony for the artistic swimming event, Ukrainian duo Marta Fiedina and Anastasiya Savchuk took to the podium having won their country its very first Olympic medal in the sport.

Waiting patiently before the national anthems began, bronze medallists Fiedina and Savchuk were left stunned when the announcer accidentally said that they were representing Russia - not their beloved Ukraine.


With medal announcements at the Olympics being made in English, Japanese and French, the announcer began: "Médaille de bronze, Russian Olympic Committee... Sorry, apologies, bronze medal is Ukraine."

The PA system clanger made for very tense scenes, with both Fiedina and Savchuk looking not best pleased as the announcer awkwardly continued on as if nothing had happened.

And given the - shall we say - chequered history between Russia and Ukraine, you see why the artistic swimming pair weren't exactly enamoured

Red-faced Olympic officials were left licking their wounds after the live gaffe and wasted no time in issuing an apology.

"It was purely an operational mistake... Of course, people noticed that and the person in charge of announcements apologised," Tokyo organising committee spokesperson Masa Tanaka said.

"I also used this opportunity to express my apology to those who are in the Ukrainian team."

While the blunder wasn't exactly a great look, it shouldn't overshadow the fantastic achievements of Fiedina and Savchuk who have made their country immensely proud.

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/Ch7

Topics: Ukraine, olympics, Tokyo Olympics, Australia, Russia