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Poll: Athenians say Games worth sacrifices

Posted: Saturday August 7, 2004 12:17PM; Updated: Saturday August 7, 2004 12:17PM
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ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- The majority of Athenians say that next week's Olympic Games are worth all the sacrifices they made in recent years, but don't plan to buy a ticket for the competition, according to a poll published Saturday.

The survey, in the daily Ta Nea, found that 81 percent of women and 74 percent of men living in Athens believe that the Olympics are worth the hardships caused to Athenians over the past years when the capital was a vast construction site.

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No margin of error or polling sample was given in the Global Link poll conducted in Athens on Aug. 3 and 4.

Saturday's poll also found that 62 percent of Athenians plan to be in the capital for the period of the games, while another 21 percent say that they will stay for some of the days.

But, in spite of the recent rising support for the Olympics, the majority of Athenians say that they will not watch any of the games from inside the stadiums.

According to the poll, 60 percent of Athenians say they do not plan to buy a ticket for any of the games, while when the survey was conducted only 15 percent of Athenians had so far bought a ticket.

Though ticket sales have picked up in the last week, less than half of the 5.3 million tickets for the Athens Games have been sold. A one-day Athens record of 53,997 tickets were purchased last Thursday, compared with a daily average of just 4,000 in June and July.

Organizers say that about 2.3 million tickets have been sold so far.

Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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