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Women's water polo was given Olympic status Wednesday, wiping out the last men-only team sport in time for the 2000 Games.

The most influential woman in the Olympic movement, IOC vice-president and USOC member Anita DeFrantz, congratulated members of Australia's team, who had been threatening to sue the IOC and swimming's governing body FINA if their bid was rejected.

"It's been a long time coming," said DeFrantz, a former Olympic rowing bronze medalist and long-time fighter for women's rights in sport. "We now have parity in all sports and I think it's a positive way to start the new millennium."

Syncronized swimming remains a single-sex sport.

"There are no men in that but, hey, let them wait," DeFrantz said.

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