New Zealand now 'more than impressed' with security for Delhi Commonwealth Games

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Wellington, Mar 21 (ANI): New Zealand chef de mission Dave Currie is now satisfied with the security for the Commonwealth Games, and said this is among the the higher levels of security he has seen anywhere.

The Commonwealth Games organisers are gradually convincing expected participants that adequate security will be provided for the October event.

The men's Hockey World Cup has been the highest profile test, supplemented by shooting, archery and boxing events, which have been held successfully in New Delhi.

"I went there pretty grumpy and somewhat cynical, thinking 'you guys are going to have to work hard to convince me' and, by and large, they did. The World Cup hockey security started a bit scratchily, but after a week it was impressive," NZ Herald quoted Currie, as saying.

"For example, going to the stadium meant your first stop was about 800 metres away. Mean-looking commando-type dudes were always parading around. There was a higher level of visible security than I've seen anywhere. And let's face it; the risk of not doing it is enormous when you consider the Cricket World Cup is there early next year."

New Zealand's Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) chief executive Michael Hooper said security planning is the highest priority and he feels safe walking around Delhi.

Black Sticks coach Shane McLeod is of a similar view, having been involved directly in that test event for two weeks in a stadium and hotel described by various media as fortresses.

"Waiting in Perth, Australia, was actually the worst part of the trip because of the anticipation. However the security fulfilled expectations and I think the organisers would have learnt a lot because teams like Canada and England could be pretty demanding.

"There was a visible presence. When we left the hotel there wasn't too much screening but when we returned there were plenty of metal detectors. It was always a worry organisers wouldn't live up to their word but at this stage I'd have no hesitation going back," McLeod said.

Shooting team manager Laurie Gray said security was under control and New Zealand athletes to the test event were treated like royalty.

Currie said accreditations worked because the right people got into the venue and the hotel. (ANI)

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