February 27, 2015

LONDON (AP) A top-ranked taekwondo fighter from Britain is seeking to change his nationality to Moldovan to ensure he qualifies for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The British Olympic Association says it is aware of the written request by Aaron Cook, who is the top fighter in the 80-kilogram category, and ''will be liaising with all parties to carefully consider'' it.

Cook was overlooked for a place in Britain's team for the 2012 London Games despite being top-ranked at the time. He claimed officials sidelined him as punishment for ditching the national training program following a disagreement with coaches.

The British team denied those claims, and taekwondo's world governing body said officials acted within the rules.

Cook hasn't competed for Britain since 2012.

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