HUNDREDS of thousands of extra London 2012 tickets are to be made available to ordinary punters, made up of returns from sponsors and overseas Olympic organisations.

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“We will get them into the hands of the British public,” said a spokesperson for the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, LOCOG.

“At least half of the ticket returns will be taken back and offered to the British public.”

The other half will be left for sponsors and foreign sports’ groups to re-sell as they see fit.

“It is only right for National Olympic Committees [to redistribute tickets],” added the spokesperson.

“They bought them upfront a year-and-a-half ago and now there is clarity about the teams they are sending and traditionally there are last minute returns which are first offered to other NOCs who need more tickets.”

The newly available tickets might help Londoners love the Olympics, but there’s a long way to go on that front: one poll found that Londoners are split more or less 50/50 on whether they are interested in the 2012 Games and 42% think London should never have bid for the event. 61% said they were “disappointed with the ticket allocation.