By John Mehaffey
LONDON (Reuters) - Greece's world indoor high jump champion Dimitris Chondrokoukis withdrew from the London Olympics on Thursday after testing positive for the drug Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson used before the 1988 Seoul Games.
Johnson was sent home in disgrace after metabolites of the anabolic steroid stanozolol were found in his urine sample following his victory over Carl Lewis in the 100 meters final in world record time.
Chondrokoukis' father and coach Kyriakos said the athlete would seek a retest after a positive test for stanozolol.
"I will fight - we will fight - to respond and see exactly what happened," a statement from Kryiakos Chondrokoukis said [nL6E8IQHID].
Johnson's fall from grace is still the biggest doping scandal in the history of the Games. After serving a two-year suspension he returned to competition but was banned for life after a positive test for excessive levels of the male sex hormone testosterone.
Hungarian discus thrower Zoltan Kovago, a silver medalist at the 2004 Athens Games, will also miss the Olympics after the Court of Arbitration for Sport said he had failed to provide a sample when requested. Kovago denied doping and said he had provided three samples within a four-day period around the time in question.
Another medalist from this year's world indoor championships, Moroccan 1,500 meters silver medalist Mariem Alaoui, will miss the Games after a positive test for a banned diuretic.
On Wednesday the world athletics governing body also announced that nine track and field athletes had been banned for doping violations.
Also on Thursday, International Judo Federation president Marius Vizer announced that Saudi Arabia's female judo competitor will fight at the London Olympics without a hijab.
Wodjan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shaherkani, one of the first two female athletes sent to the Olympics by the conservative Muslim kingdom, will not be wearing the Islamic headscarf when competing in the women's heavyweight tournament next Friday.
Female participation in sports is a controversial issue in Saudi Arabia, where powerful clerics denounce women for exercising [nL6E8IQMCY].
The fallout from Wednesday's diplomatic blunder when the North Korean women's team left the field before their match with Colombia at Glasgow's Hampden Park because the South Korean flag had been displayed continued with an angry response from North Korea's Olympic representative Ung Chang.
"Of course the people are angry," International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Chang told Reuters television [nL6E8IQEKZ]. "If your athlete got a gold medal and put the flag probably of some other country, what happens?"
North and South Korea have been bitter enemies since their 1950-53 war. They have also been drawn against each other in the first round of the men's table tennis.
British Prime Minister David Cameron called the incident an honest mistake and said he was sure there would be no repetition [nL6E8IQECZ] at the Games, which have cost the British taxpayer more than 9 billion pounds at a time of economic downturn.
Earlier, in response to a question from Chang on the final day of the IOC session, president Jacques Rogge said there had been no "political connotation" [nL4E8IQ3P4].
"The organizing committee has taken corrective action and there will be no repeat. It was a simple human mistake," he said.
"NOTHING TO CHANCE"
Speaking to reporters at the Olympic Park, Cameron said the government's priority was to ensure a safe and secure Olympics, with more than 9,000 extra police walking the streets and 17,000 troops called in to cover a shortfall left by private security group G4S.
Security has been an overriding concern for the government and Games' organizers. The day after the British capital was awarded its third Olympics in 2005, four suicide bombers killed 52 commuters in London.
G4S caused a scandal by failing to meet its target for the number of guards it could provide, and on Tuesday said that it had deployed around 5,800 security personnel, still short of its revised objective of 7,000.
"This is the biggest security operation in our peacetime history, bar none, and we are leaving nothing to chance," Cameron said.
"Obviously the biggest concern has always got to be a safe and secure Games. That matters more than anything else."
Londoners took to the streets on another sun-drenched day to watch the penultimate day of the torch relay which passed some of the city's most famous landmarks on its way to Downing Street, official residence of the prime minister, and Buckingham Palace, the central London home of Britain's Queen Elizabeth.
"It's amazing, look, people are hanging out of the windows to watch," said 61-year-old sales assistant Ulla Davis. "The country has always been enthusiastic, it's just the newspapers that have been against it."
Excitement over the Games has been visibly building, partially dampening down criticism that the huge costs and transport woes are not worth the trouble. Britain's capital will be the first city to host the Summer Olympics three times.
After the opening ceremony on Friday, attention will focus on the sport, with the progress of swimmer Michael Phelps, looking bedraggled and scruffy when he appeared in front of the media three days before he enters his final Olympics, dominating the first week of the competition as he battles U.S. team mate Ryan Lochte for supremacy in the pool.
Phelps, who won a record eight gold medals in Beijing, will attempt seven events before he retires.
(Editing by Justin Palmer)