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Britain's Cultural Minister Jeremy Hunt drops a clanger with Olympic bell

posted 27 Jul 2012, 03:58 by Mpelembe   [ updated 27 Jul 2012, 03:59 ]

Britain's Sport and Cultural Secretary Jeremy Hunt was left red-faced when his bell broke during an interview at a pre-Olympic bell-ringing ceremony, after saying the Games could not completely go off without a hitch.

LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JULY 27, 2012)(REUTERS) - British Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt was left red-faced after his bell broke at a bell ringing ceremony, commemorating the first day of the Olympic games in London (July 27).

Hunt, speaking beforehand, said there was no way for an event as big as the Olympics to go off without a hitch.

"Well I can't say there won't be hitches because this really is one of the biggest things you can do. 26 major sports international sports tournaments all at the same time, around 100 heads of states coming in. There are huge amounts to get right. There are always one or two teething problems. But I'm very confident that we're ready. Jacques Rogge, the president of the IOC (International Olympic Committee) said that London is more ready than any other Olympic host city that has ever been and when there are things that don't go according to plan, London will cope in the way that it always has," he told Reuters Television.

Immediately afterwards, when asked to ring his bell, Hunt did so enthusiastically but the bell broke from its handle, and the chime flew through the air and struck a publicist in the leg off camera.

Hunt, whose faced turned red from embarrassment, checked on the safety of the publicist and turned to the reporter and said: "Disaster averted! You got more tv than you expected!"

The Olympics, dubbed "The greatest show on earth", will kick off on Friday night with an Opening Ceremony created by Oscar-winning film director Danny Boyle.