A number of Canadian athletes, who have Irish ancestry, have told the Olympic Council of Ireland they would like to compete on the country’s behalf at the next Winter Olympics in Russia in 2014.

Jack McGouran, spokesman for the Olympic Committee, said the popularity of the Irish team in Vancouver’s Olympic Village is such that many Canadians have shown interest in joining it, today’s Mail on Sunday reported.

“The Irish team have been remarkably popular here because of the close links between our country and Canada,” he told the Mail, adding, “They want to help Ireland become a bigger nation in winter sports.

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