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All nine 2012 bid cities could last pace in race
( 2003-08-05 09:37) (Agencies)

All nine cities hoping to host the 2012 Summer Olympics could remain in the race to the end, escaping any cuts to the group next year, International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge said.

Speaking in Santo Domingo where he attended the opening of the Pan American Games at the weekend, Rogge said that with each city apparently capable of hosting the Olympics, there may be no need to cut.

"The cut is just made to separate the cities that are capable of organising the Games from the ones that still have to improve their candidature... their bid," Rogge told specialist Olympic publication Around the Rings.

"I expect a big number of cities to pass the test, and possibly all cities.

"It will depend on the quality of the bid."

Havana, Istanbul, Leipzig, London, Madrid, Moscow, New York, Paris and Rio de Janeiro have until January to file an initial questionnaire on their overall qualifications to host the Games.

The winning city will be announced at the 117th IOC Session in Singapore in July 2005.

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