Husband and wife ban hits the Marks
Australia shooter Russell Mark arrived in Britain an angry man after being told he won’t be allowed to sleep with his wife during the London Olympics.
Mark and his wife Lauryn, a fellow competitor who is also on the Australian shooting team, have been told to room separately during the Games.
The 48-year-old Mark, competing at his sixth Olympics, said Australian officials had enforced the ban as a result of Lauryn’s contentious appearance in ‘lads magazine’ Zoo, where she has been photo-graphed holding a shotgun over her back dressed only in a green and gold bikini.
Mark said he and his wife were being punished for being a married couple.
“The stupid part of this... is that there are tons of gay couples on the Olympic team who will be rooming together so we are being discriminated against because we are heterosexual.
“Every couple, whether they are married or de facto should have the AOC (Australian Olympic Committee) trying to bend over backwards to accommodate their needs.
“What angered the AOC more than anything else is the photo shoot. It’s just too hard for them.”
But Nick Green, the chef de mission for the Australian team in London, dismissed the claims and denied there was discrimination against heterosexual couples.
“It is simply not true. I have known Russell for 16 years,” he said.
“Accommodation and bedding are done in a particular way to ensure all the athletes are accommodated in the athletes village.”
Mark made headlines in Australia in May when he threatened to parade at the opening ceremony of the Games in a lime-green mankini.
He said then the penalty for losing the wager over the outcome of an Aussie Rules football clash was to don the skimpy bathing suit made famous by the movie “Borat” starring Sacha Baron Cohen.