Fernando Zylberberg has been dropped from Argentina’s warm-up Olympic squad. (YouTube)
The Argentine hockey player who starred in a controversial Olympic Games training video set in the Falkland Islands has been dropped from Argentina's final warm-up event.
Fernando Zylberberg, 34, has not been named in the 18-man squad for the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia. It is not known if the midfielder, who has previously captained the team, will make the squad for London 2012.
Having already competed in the 2000 and 2004 Olympics, Zylberberg was in the Argentina side that qualified for London 2012 as Pan-American champions last year. His absence from the Malaysian event does not necessarily mean he will not be named in the final Olympics line-up.
It is thought Zylberberg was asked to be in the state-supported advert as he was seen as a certainty to be chosen to compete for Argentina this summer.
In the ad, he can be seen running through the Falkland Islands and exercising on the steps of a war memorial to British soldiers. The 90-second advert ends with the slogan "To compete on English soil, we are training on Argentine soil."
Zylberberg has defended the provocative campaign and dismissed suggestions that it was secretly filmed without permission from the Falklands government.
He told Al Jazeera: "The message is that to every Argentinian the islands belong to Argentina. To me, to be training in any other province or to do it over the islands is the same,' he said.
"When we were there we did not say that we were doing an advertisement but we were not hiding. In fact, people helped us."
The Argentina Olympics Committee (COA) issued a statement distancing itself from the advertisement.
COA president Gerardo Werthein said. "Using the Olympic Games to make political gestures of any kind is not acceptable and we will conduct ourselves in the proper spirit of Olympism in all that we do in London and elsewhere."
Advertising agency Young and Rebicam (Y&R), whose Argentinian agency was behind the ad, also condemned it. "It has come to our attention that our agency in Argentina created an ad for the Argentine government that has deeply offended many people in the UK and around the world
"Whatever it was the creators set out to highlight, what they produced is contrary to everything that we as a company stand for.
"We are deeply regretful for the pain this ad has caused and apologise to the many who have been rightly disturbed by it, as have we."
This article is copyrighted by IBTimes.co.uk, the business news leader