By Matt Walsh
CANBERRA, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- Australia's host Olympic broadcaster on Monday apologized "unreservedly" for two "mistakes" which left Chinese-Australians angry during its coverage of the Rio Olympics' opening ceremony.
Those hoping to catch a glimpse of Chinese athletes walking into the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on Saturday (AEST) were left disappointed as the Seven Network cut short the Chinese entrance to take a poorly-timed commercial break.
Fans were also left confused when Seven's medal tally predictions showed Chile's flag next to China's name in the projected table.
The network described both incidents as mistakes, and ones which were "accidental".
A spokesperson for the Seven Network told Xinhua on Monday that it regretted taking the commercial break when the Chinese team was entering the Maracana Stadium, saying that finding time for advertisements during a live broadcast was always "difficult".
"It was a mistake -- and to the people who have been offended by it, we apologize unreservedly to them," the spokesperson told Xinhua in an interview on Monday.
"The decision on when to place commercial breaks during live events is always difficult ... It's regrettable that the ad break fell when it did, during China's entrance, and we acknowledge our mistake."
Meanwhile, the spokesperson said confusion on the network's brand new "virtual set" was to blame for the unfortunate flag incident, in which Chile's flag was wrongly put next to China's name on the network's medal prediction table during the broadcast.
The Seven Network said the "human error" which led to the flag of Chile --next to China on the list of competing nations in the set's computer -- being put on screen was embarrassing and was promptly taken down as soon as producers noticed the problem.
"We have designed a new 'virtual set' - the first of its kind in Sydney - and the technology we are using is the latest in the world. This incident occurred during the first couple of hours on set during live-to-air conditions," the spokesperson said.
"It was one of those moments we wish we could take back and re-live. Programed into the computer system running the graphics are the flags for all competing nations. The country next to China is Chile, and Chile's flag was mistakenly selected and put up accidentally for the briefest of time."
"It was certainly up, and we apologize again without reservation."
Seven's coverage of the Games has also come under scrutiny from Australian fans. Some paid up to 15 U.S dollars for a 'premium' product. Both the Seven Olympics app and desktop coverage has been hampered by lag, glitches and poor resolution during the first few days of the Olympic competition.