The International Olympic Committee president, Jacques Rogge, yesterday sent an unmistakeable warning to London not to re-engage Christine Ohuruogu as an ambassador for 2012.

Rogge was in London for the launch of a new $200m (£100m) partnership deal between Panasonic and the IOC, and made it clear that it would be inappropriate for anyone convicted of doping offences to be the face of the games. Ohuruogu was an ambassador for London 2012 prior to being banned for a year for missing three drugs tests, but the IOC has not forgotten the embarrassment it suffered in Athens in 2004 when Greek stars Konstantinos Kenteris and Ekaterini Thanou fled from drugs testers on the eve of the games.

"Anti-doping is the IOC's No1 priority and we have a zero tolerance of doping. We have taken exemplary measures against doping and I believe that our policy has total credibility," Rogge said.

Under new IOC regulations set to be adopted in Beijing any athlete banned for more than six months for doping offences could be banned from the games for four years. Fortunately for Ohuruogu the new rules will not be retrospective and, with her lifetime ban likely to be lifted later this year, she is expected to line up in China.

Freedom has its limits

A combination of Japanese corporate protocol and the IOC's addiction to ceremony meant Panasonic's sponsorship "signing ceremony" at London's Banqueting House was pompous even by Olympic standards. Having claimed that the deal would help promote world peace, Panasonic banned the invited media from asking any questions about Christine Ohuruogu. By way of contrast Jacques Rogge was happy to guarantee press freedom in Beijing next summer.

Sorry is hardest word

Christine Ohuruogu's failure to show any contrition for missing three drugs tests has been a major factor in the mixed reaction to her world championship gold medal, and the suspicion that she has been badly advised is shared at the top of the British sporting establishment. One senior figure involved in the London Olympics has informed her management company, Linford Christie's Nuff Respect, that a public acknowledgement of her mistakes would have helped secure a more positive press. Despite the benefits an apology might have for her impending appeal against her Olympic ban, Ohuruogu continues to maintain that she is the injured party.

Johnson's Olympic gaffe

Boris Johnson is not the first politician to try to exploit London 2012 for his own ends - Ken Livingstone has been at it for years - but his first step into Olympic waters was not promising. Johnson dropped a major clanger at the launch of his campaign for the London mayoral election yesterday, promising to give cheap London 2012 tickets to local schoolchildren in direct contravention of the capital's contract with the IOC, and possibly European law.

Johnson's policy had clearly not been checked with London 2012 as, according to Olympic regulations, host cities cannot offer discounts or preferable terms in their local market. It is also thought that fixing ticket prices in favour of Londoners would contravene European competition law. One way round the rules would be for the mayor's office to bulk-buy tickets and pass them on to children at a discount, but even that might breach anti-touting legislation.

World Cup boycott threat

Relations between the International Rugby Board and the media are at breaking point on the eve of the World Cup, with leading international agencies threatening to boycott the tournament and journalists facing the prospect of being locked out of grounds. The IRB is seeking to restrict the use of images online, and force news organisations and photographers to surrender copyright on pictures. They had initially threatened to remove the accreditation of any journalist criticising the tournament organisation, but have backed down on that issue.


Paul Kelso

The GuardianTramp

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