March 15, 2010 / 3:06 PM / 8 years ago

Japan's ski officials told to tighten "morals"

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan’s skiing officials have been read the riot act after one of their snowboarders wore his Vancouver Olympic uniform in “hip hop” style last month.

Dreadlocked boarder Kazuhiro Kokubo narrowly escaped being kicked out of the Games after arriving with his trousers pulled low on his hips, shirt hanging out and his tie loose.

The 21-year-old with double nose piercings was banned from attending the opening ceremony and forced to apologize at a news conference before finishing eighth in the men’s halfpipe.

A senior Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) official said on Monday apologies were not enough.

“All members of the (Ski Association of Japan) must provide strict guidance to the athletes,” JOC secretary general Noriyuki Ichihara told reporters on Monday.

“The JOC will also try to lend its weight to the moral education of the athletes.”

Reporting by Alastair Himmer. Editing by Miles Evans

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