Top Greek Sprinters Pulled Off Team

Greek star sprinters Kostas Kenteris (search) and Katerina Thanou (search) have been pulled off the team for the Athens Games for missing drug tests, the Greek Olympic Committee said Saturday.

Athanassios Beligratis, a committee board member, said the decision was contingent on a final ruling by the International Olympic Committee (search).

The sprinters' coach, Christos Tsekos (search), was also suspended.

The case has stunned the host nation and overshadowed the opening of what was supposed to be a triumphant showcase of national pride and achievement.

Kenteris, the reigning 200-meter champion, is Greece's most celebrated athlete. Thanou, the 100-meter silver medalist in Sydney four years ago, is his training partner.

The two remained hospitalized Saturday with minor injuries reportedly sustained in a motorcycle crash early Friday, just hours after drug testers failed to find them in the Olympic village. They also missed drug tests in Chicago earlier this week.

The International Olympic Committee opened an investigation Thursday to determine whether they deliberately missed the test. On Friday, the IOC gave the athletes a three-day extension to appear for a hearing.