Thursday 19 October 2017

Sylviane caught in vicious crossfire of sporting politics

From mixing with royalty to facing armed police, Pat Hickey's innocent wife has been through a terrible ordeal

OLYMPIC SOCIAL CIRCUIT: Sylviane and Pat Hickey were no strangers to socialising with dignitaries such as Vladimir Putin
OLYMPIC SOCIAL CIRCUIT: Sylviane and Pat Hickey were no strangers to socialising with dignitaries such as Vladimir Putin
Liam Collins

Liam Collins

When she woke up to her 65th birthday yesterday, Sylviane Hickey, the wife of the former Olympic Council of Ireland President, Pat Hickey, was believed to be in her native France while her 71-year-old husband languished in a Rio prison with his long and, at times, distinguished career in tatters.

For a woman who has been feted by presidents and princes, there wasn't much to celebrate yesterday. Sylviane, who has avoided the limelight in Ireland with as much determination as her husband has courted controversy, has watched her world collapse since the dramatic events unfolded in Rio on Wednesday, August 17.

While the Hickey family have appointed a new public relations advisor and a firm of solicitors to represent them, questions about Mrs Sylviane Hickey, the woman who has been by her husband's side through thick and thin over the last five decades, were "off limits" and friends describe her as "too fragile" to talk at the moment.

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