By Duncan Mackay

Team GBMarch 10 - The British Olympic Association (BOA) is to take its row over cash with London 2012 to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, they announced tonight.

The unprecedented decision to take the matter to sport's highest court is because the BOA fear that even if the International Olympic Committee (IOC) do find in their favour in the dispute over the Joint Marketing Agreement (JMA) between them and London 2012 it could still be challenged.

But a CAS decision would be final and binding, they believe.

The case, which could potentially take several months before it is resolved, will centre on whether the BOA is entitled to a share of the surplus from the Olympics alone, or the Games and Paralympics combined.

It is anticipated that the cost of hosting the Paralympics could be up to £400 million ($648 million) which will eat into the profits due to the BOA, who will get 20 per cent of any surplus.

"Since London was first awarded the honour of hosting the 2012 Olympic Games in 2005, the British Olympic Association (BOA) has been determined to make certain the Games are the beginning, rather than the end, of a dynamic new era for sport throughout the United Kingdom," said a BOA statement.

"This will be achieved through the delivery of a lasting and transformational sports legacy following the Olympic Games.

"The fulfilment of this promise is so important to the BOA that we are now seeking a speedy, final and binding decision through the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on how the Olympic Games surplus should be determined.

"Decisions made by CAS are final and binding, and the Host City Contract specifies that CAS is the appropriate forum for resolution of matters such as this.

"We are committed to reaching a resolution that is fair, equitable and ultimately contributes to the post-Games legacy from what we know will be the highly successful London 2012 Olympics.

"The International Olympic Committee has been extremely helpful to the BOA and the London 2012 Organising Committee in attempting to reach consensus on this very important matter and we thank them for their efforts."

Sebastian Coe, the chairman of London 2012, insisted that the row would not affect athletes' preparations for next year.

"This is a technical, narrow dispute and we will resolve it," he told the BBC.

"This has no impact at all on the ability of Team GB or Paralympic GB to be competing.

"You know we have got great momentum across the project and the relationships are very strong and this will be resolved."

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