Cook up for taekwondo fight-off
World number one Aaron Cook would accept a fight-off with British taekwondo rival Lutalo Muhammad for a place at the Olympic Games.
Cook was overlooked by GB Taekwondo - its controversial selection of world number 59 Muhammad was finally ratified by the British Olympic Association at the third attempt.
Cook's lawyers Harbottle and Lewis will send a "letter before action" to the BOA in the next 24 hours, outlining their legal case.
That letter will include fresh evidence that the GB Taekwondo selection process was flawed, according to Cook's management representative Jamie Cunningham.
If there is no progress from the BOA or the World Taekwondo Federation, who are undertaking their own review of the process, by the start of next week then Cook will take a legal challenge to either the Court of Arbitration for Sport or the High Court.
But Cunningham believes it is possible for the Olympic competition to be expanded to 17 athletes, with Cook and Muhammad meeting in a preliminary round.
There are numerous hurdles that would have to be crossed for that situation to occur, but Cook would "seriously consider" the compromise of a fight-off with Muhammad.
"I feel I am world number one and I don't need to prove myself but if that is my last hope of going to the Olympic Games then I would fight him any time any place anywhere," Cook said.
Cunningham has floated the idea of a preliminary round Olympic fight-off in an email to the WTF.
It is one way the sport could extricate itself from a situation which could damage taekwondo's reputation a year before its Olympic future goes under review.
"Our understanding is there is a set-up where there could be a 17th athlete incorporated into the current structure," Cunningham said.
"If the WTF wanted one of the biggest sporting occasions of the Olympic Games - Lutalo against Aaron in a preliminary round - we would probably do that.
"We know how complicated it would be to get to that point. We have raised it as an idea for the sport.
"Other governing bodies worldwide have supported the idea of a fight-off between two athletes to settle a selection procedure.
"It would be one of the biggest moments of the Olympic Games. It is a great idea.
"Politically and constitutionally within the Olympics there are thousands of barriers to get through before the idea sees the light of day.
"It may be it gets rejected but we have raised it as a great idea for the sport."
"I am sure the IOC are looking at this whole situation and asking why the world's greatest taekwondo tournament does not include the world number one.
"I would ask the IOC to consider my situation."