Blunders leave organisers red-faced | india | Hindustan Times
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Blunders leave organisers red-faced

india Updated: Jul 27, 2012 01:35 IST

It was a day the organisers of the London Olympics would love to forget, thanks to three mistakes which left them deeply embarrassed.

Organisers had to apologise after a mix-up over North Korea's flag prompted its women's football team to walk off the pitch. The North Korean squad were pictured next to the national flag of South Korea — with whom the North are officially still at war — at their opening match against Colombia. The North Koreans walked off but were persuaded to return an hour later when the teams were reannounced with the correct flag.

Then came the geographical goof-up. Ukraine asked organisers to correct biographies of athletes published on the Games website that place the competitors' Ukrainian birthplaces in Russia. The organisers also had to apologise for another nationality gaffe after the official Team GB programme listed the Welsh midfielder Joe Allen as English.

Finally, the official shopping centre apologised for putting up "Welcome to London" banners in Arabic that read backwards. It was also written with spaces between the letters, making them hard to decipher. At first glance, the banners appeared so alien to some Arabic speakers they thought they were written in Farsi.