Oy vey -- more Olympic uniform drama!
After Spain, Great Britain and the U.S. caused a hubbub over their uniforms (for being ugly, unpatriotic and unpatriotic, respectively), Egypt must have felt left out. So the Egyptian delegates to the 2012 London Olympics, reports the Telegraph, will be outfitted in Nike and Adidas knockoffs.
Because intellectual property ain't no thang.
The players verified the awkward situation. Yomna Khallaf, competing for Egypt in synchronized swimming, tweeted that her Olympic bag had a giant Nike logo... and that the zippers were marked "Adidas."
Interestingly, the Egyptian Olympic Committee is well aware that its uniform supplier is handing them knockoff goods. Committee chairman General Mahmoud Ahmed Ali confirmed to the AP, "We signed with a Chinese distributor in light of Egypt's economic situation."
Which sounds rather sensible -- in a struggling country, why waste thousands of bucks on brand-name athletic gear? -- but is certainly not enough to please Nike. The company sent a letter to the Egyptian Olympic Committee, stating that "Nike consistently acts to protect its brand and actively engages with law enforcement agencies and Customs authorities to stop counterfeit product reaching consumers and athletes." In other words, don't buy the fake stuff.
According to the BBC, the EOC and Nike are now "in discussions" over the matter. While it's a little late to pull the plug on all the uniforms, seeing as the whole shebang kicks off tomorrow, perhaps Egypt could take a page out of Ralph Lauren's book and simply promise to do better next time.
Should Nike forgive Egypt's thriftiness or come down hard on the issue of knockoffs? Read more at Sports.Yahoo.com.
UPDATE, 7/27/12: Nike announced that it will donate uniforms to Team Egypt -- a shipment of certifiable Nike gear will arrive in London on Saturday, writes AP.
Check out America's Olympic gear: