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Canadians feeling less than enthusiastic about Rio Games: poll

Last Updated Aug 4, 2016 at 10:42 am PDT

(Via Twitter: @Olympics)

Many Canadians are worried about the health of athletes, in part, due to the Zika virus

The opening ceremony is Friday

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The hype is building as the opening ceremony for the Summer Olympics in Rio fast approaches. But a new poll from Angus Reid suggests Canadians aren’t too excited about the Games.

It appears Canadians have really soured on the Olympic spirit. We’re so worried about the health of some of our athletes thanks to the water quality in Rio seven-in-10 of us would rather our rowers, canoeists and kayakers come back home instead of going for gold.

And a majority (55 per cent) would advise athletes in all sports to do the same because of concerns they might contract Zika virus.

Pollster Shachi Kurl says 81 per cent don’t like what the Games have turned into recently. “Canadians do agree that basically the spirt of the Games and what the Games are supposed to be about, which is the athletes, has really been lost in the sponsorship and commercialism and the corruption.”

But while one-in-10 of us are — what pollsters call ‘very interested’ in the Games — Kurl adds that might change if we start hearing O Canada played during the medal presentations.

Meantime, Vancouver’s Olympic Cauldron will be lit tomorrow night for the opening ceremony as a symbol of solidarity and support from home with our Canadian athletes in Rio. The flames will ignite at Jack Poole Plaza at 6:45 p.m. and will burn until about 9 p.m. It will be re-lit on September 7th for the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games.