April 28 - International Tennis Federation (ITF) President Francesco Ricci Bitti has hit back at claims by Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes that the governing body is making unacceptable demands ahead of the Olympics as "inaccurate and unfair".
Paes claimed last week that international federations will "keep complaining about me until the day the Olympics start, because sometimes they want us to do things that are too large".
He singled out the ITF for demanding a 20,000-capacity stadium, when plans are for a 10,000-seater one.
Ricci Bitti is also President of the Association for Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) and earlier this month was vocally critical of preparations for the Games.
"The specific reference to tennis is both inaccurate and unfair because the existing project fully satisfies the requirements of a 10,000-seat centre court stadium," he told insidethegames.
"The ITF has never requested that the centre court capacity be changed."
According to the official Candidature File submitted to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) by Rio 2016 in February 2009, the overall capacity for the Olympic Tennis Centre should be 18,250.
This is made up 10,000 centre court capacity, as well as the 5,000 for show court one, 3,000 for show court two and a further 250 for other courts.
The ITF claimed their demands have not changed since then.
The outburst from Paes, a figure known for speaking his mind, could further upset an already fragile relationship between Rio 2016 and ASOIF at a crucial time in preparations for the Games.
Following the latest visit of the IOC Coordination Commission to Rio last month, slow progress regarding the construction of venues was lambasted during the ASOIF General Assembly at the SportAccord Convention in Belek, Turkey.
The criticism was led by RIcci Bitti who blamed the Government and Rio Mayor's office, rather than Rio 2016, for the continual delays.
Since then, a long awaited infrastructural budget has been unveiled by the Municipal, State and Federal Governments, although much more progress is clearly required.
Speaking today to insidethegames, Ricci Bitti outlined further the stance of the ITF and other governing bodies as they seek to work with rather than against Brazilian authorities to address all their concerns.
"However, at the recent meeting with ASOIF in Turkey, they expressed their general concern about the progress of venue construction, which is behind schedule and in some cases significantly so.
"The IFs know very well that their demands should only be related to the bid documents and IOC technical requirements.
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April 2014: Role of Brazilian Government in Rio 2016 preparations blasted during ASOIF General Assembly