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France's top women cleared, Paire ban extended

Paire was kicked out of the French Olympic team over allegations of poor conduct in Rio Games.

Published: 24th September 2016 04:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 24th September 2016 04:00 PM   |  A+A-

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France tennis star Benoit Paire | AFP

By AFP

PARIS: A ban on France's top two women tennis players Kristina Mladenovic and Caroline Garcia for their behaviour at the Rio Olympics was lifted by the French Tennis Federation (FFT) on Saturday, but the suspension of male teammate Benoit Paire extended.

The three players had been provisionally suspended by the FFT following their "unacceptable" behaviour at the Rio Games last month.

Garcia, the French number one, and Mladenovic, the number two, are now free to compete in the Fed Cup final against the Czech Republic on November 12-13 in Strasbourg.

Mladenovic was accused of publicly criticising the federation following her and Garcia's defeat in the Olympic doubles tournament. The pair are the reigning French Open doubles champions.

She said in a tweet the federation failed to tell the players about tournament rules whereby they had to wear the same colours on court, forcing Garcia into a last-minute change of kit borrowed from her teammate.

The federation said in a statement they had taken into account the "regret expressed" by Mladenovic and Garcia for their "comments pronounced in the wake of a terrible disappointment and frustration".

The federation accepted "in a general manner it's share of responsibility for the problems at the Rio Games", but refused to clear Paire.

Paire, 27, was kicked out of the French Olympic team over allegations of poor conduct in Rio including lengthy absences from the Olympic village.

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