London: An Australian boxer who wore a T-shirt emblazoned with an Aboriginal flag into the competition arena for his Olympic bout has been cautioned by team officials for breaching a policy which prohibits athletes from making political statements.

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Damien Hooper, who won his opening light heavyweight bout Monday against Marcus Browne of the United States, said the shirt was just an expression of pride.

"I'm Aboriginal, I'm representing my culture and my people as well, that's what I wanted to do," Hooper said after his bout. "I'm not saying that I don't care, I'm just saying I'm very proud of what I did."

AOC spokesman Mike Tancred said Hooper had been warned about the incident, and had promised to wear only his Australian uniform in the future and would apologise to Australian team chef de mission Nick Green.

IOC spokeswoman Emmanuelle Moreau said the IOC had been informed of the incident by the Australians.

"The AOC is handling the matter and is in touch with the athlete," she said. "At the moment it is in their hands. We'll leave it with them for the moment."


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