Australian swimmer Stephanie Rice says she is friends with US basketballer Kobe Bryant, but they are not - and never have been - in a relationship.
The two-time Olympian took to Twitter to rubbish claims that she had drummed up a romance with the married star in London, after the pair had been seen together at several events at the Games.
"FYI yes Kobe and I are friends, but no we are not together and never have been. Can't guys and girls be just friends..?" Rice tweeted early on Friday morning (AEST).
"He's an amazing athlete and I've enjoyed getting to know him and many other great athletes in my Olympic journey."
Rumours of the purported fling has made global headlines and went into overdrive when Australian basketballer Liz Cambage appeared to criticise Rice on Wednesday.
"I love how Kobe has his wife with him at the Olympics, yet still surrounded by groupies!!!" Cambage tweeted.
"Some women need to get a grip, ASAP!"
But the 20-year-old quickly hit back at claims the comments were directed at her compatriot Rice.
"LOL media makes me laugh, I never named anyone? LETS GO BOOMERS, goodnight everyone xxx."