According to the controversial age limit rule in effect, all gymnasts must have been born in the year 1992 or earlier in order to be eligible to compete. Though the Chinese government supplied passports indicating all gymnasts on the team were of age, media outlets and bloggers uncovered several Chinese documents demonstrating team members He Kexin and Jiang Yuyuan were born in 1994 and 1993, respectively.
The media coverage surrounding the issue was enormous, and after the competition the IOC urged the FIG to further investigate the issue. A month later, the FIG announced that the Chinese gymnasts had been confirmed as old enough by the legal documents supplied by China. While some doubted the thoroughness of the FIG's investigation, others used this case to rally against the age limit, declaring it unenforceable.
Though it's not the first time a delegation has been accused of doctoring ages, because it was an Olympic year and involved the team champions, this instance threw yet another gymnastics controversy into the limelight of mainstream media.
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More coverage of the age controversy:
- 2008 Gymnasts Old Enough; 2000 Gymnasts Still Under Investigation
- FIG Expands Chinese Age Investigation
- Information requested from the Chinese government
- Possible Evidence of the Chinese Gymnasts' Ages
- China's Age Controversy Not Going Away