SOCHI SCENE: Boxing Kangaroo Returns

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 7, 2014 at 1:42 am •  Published: February 7, 2014
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KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) — The Boxing Kangaroo, Australia's unofficial but much-loved mascot, has hopped back into controversy at another Winter Games.

Four years after the International Olympic Committee stepped in to allow the Australian team to fly the gold-and-green Boxing Kangaroo flag at the athletes' village in Vancouver, a security guard at the moguls venue at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park this week ordered Shane Morris, the father of Australian aerial skier Dave Morris, to stop flying the flag.

Shane Morris, who was there with his wife, Margaret, and Dave's brother Peter to cheer on Australian athletes, refused the order. The guard eventually gave up trying to stop him.

"It's definitely been a symbol of our team, and of course, it's already had some controversy in the past," Australian team leader Ian Chesterman said Friday at a news conference. "It's flying in our village area now. I'm glad the Boxing Kangaroo is back in the news."

Dave Morris said his family was unlikely to tone down their very visual display of Australiana, and was more likely to do more than just fly the flag the next time they're at the venue.

"My brother has this green and gold suit. It's disgraceful, but he'll probably wear it tomorrow," Dave Morris said. "Or he'll probably come dressed as a kangaroo."

— Dennis Passa — Twitter: http://twitter.com/DennisPassa

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Associated Press reporters will be filing dispatches about happenings in and around Sochi during the 2014 Winter Games. Follow AP journalists covering the Olympics on Twitter: http://apne.ws/1c3WMiu