Winter Olympics 2018: Russia's athletes 'hugely disappointed' with IOC verdict

Isaac Cain
February 7, 2018

Three days before the start of the 23rd Olympic Winter Games, almost three dozen Russian athletes on Tuesday filed a last-minute appeal to have their doping bans lifted so they can compete in Pyeongchang.

"For 28 cases, the appeal was accepted and our decision annulled", Oswald said.

Hoevertsz said at the 132nd International Olympic Committee session that the decision not invite 15 acquitted Russians was unanimously taken by the International Olympic Committee commission, reports Tass news agency.

The applicants are Victor Ahn, Vladimir Grigorev, Anton Shipulin, Evgeniy Garanichev, Ruslan Murashov, Ekaterina Shikhova, Sergei Ustyugov, Ksenia Stolbova, Ekaterina Urlova-Percht, Maksim Tcvetkov, Irina Uslugina, Yulia Shokshueva, Daria Virolainen, Dmitri Popov, Roman Koshelev, Mikhail Naumenkov, Alexei Bereglasov, Valeri Nichushkin, Anton Belov, Sergei Plotnikov, Evgeniya Zakharova, Ruslan Zakharov, Anna Iurakova, Alexey Esin, Yulia Skokova, Elizaveta Kazelina, Sergey Gryaztsov, Ivan Bukin, Denis Arapetyan, Artem Kozlov, Gleb Retivikh and Alexey Volkov.

"It's surprising that IOC Commission makes its decisions on the basis of some additional, suspicious, and anonymous information and accounts of one single fraudster", the commission said, referring to whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov, who is the source of revelations on Moscow's state-sponsored doping.

It comes after 28 Russian athletes had their Olympic doping bans overturned when their appeals were upheld last week by sport's highest tribunal, The Court of Arbitration for Sport. The athletes want a "comprehensive review" of how the investigation by lawyer Richard McLaren into Russia's doping conspiracy was handled.

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"I believe.the International Olympic Committee has not only failed to protect clean athletes but has made it possible for cheating athletes to prevail against the clean athletes", said Pound. Thus, we call for stronger leadership from sport to protect clean athletes and their right to doping-free sport.

Lee Hee-beom, chairman of the Pyeongchang Olympics organizing committee, says they'll be sequestered until they're declared well.

The IOC has banned Russian Federation from the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics starting later this week over "systematic manipulation" of the anti-doping system in Sochi but 169 athletes with no history of doping have been invited to compete as neutrals.

The body also banned all Russian national emblems, including the flag and coat of arms, obliging the athletes to compete in a neutral uniform containing no indication of their national affiliation. If they win gold medals, the Olympic anthem will be played. It's not clear how that process would work.

Late invitations could result in other Russians being cut, especially in sports such as hockey where a full roster is already registered.

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