Australia, US sign Olympic cooperation deal

Sydney: Australia and the United States will share in athlete and coaching exchanges and work together against doping and illegal betting under a new agreement, according to the Australian Olympic Committee.

The deal with the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) will also see both sides help each other prepare for next year`s London Olympics as well as the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, and the Rio 2016 Games, the AOC said.

The AOC said the agreement will facilitate athlete and coaching exchanges, a sharing of information regarding the education and development of coaches, sport medicine, and the fight against doping and illegal and irregular betting.

It will also offer reciprocal access to athlete training facilities and pre-Games preparation camps in the United States and Australia.

"This is an affirmation of an already strong relationship," AOC President John Coates said in a statement.

"The USOC has been a great friend to us, particularly in the years leading up to the Sydney 2000 Olympics. We learned a lot from them in Atlanta in 1996."

Coates signed the agreement with USOC President Larry Probst in Durban during this week`s meeting of the International Olympic Committee.

The USOC expects to take a team of more than 600 athletes to London next year, while the AOC is planning for a team comprising about 430 athletes depending on the number of qualifications.

They will be two of the biggest teams at the 2012 London Olympics.

Bureau Report

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