The Russian athletes won’t be able to participate under the country’s flag for the next two years. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) halved the World Anti-Doping Agency’s four-year ban of all the Russian teams from international sports events, but didn’t completely erase the initial judgment as many in this country hoped for. Also, Russia won’t be allowed to use its signs at the next two Olympics, in Tokyo and Paris.
After WADA found Russia “non-compliant” with its rules and codes, the same institution banned its teams from all competitions in the next four years. The Russian athletes were not allowed to use the country’s flag, nor the hymn and the name. Furthermore, Russia had been prohibited from bidding to host any international competition during the period of the sentence.
Russia is banned from international sports events for 2 years, including the Tokyo Olympics and Qatar World Cup.
It follows accusations of state-backed doping and officials tampering with tests to cover it up. Russians can still compete, but not under Russia's anthem or flag. pic.twitter.com/5RoDPsuFb2
— AJ+ (@ajplus) December 17, 2020
Originally, WADA punished Russia until 2024, but after CAS’s decision, the sentence will last until December 16, 2022. Still, according to the same ruling, the athletes from this country will appear at the Tokyo and Paris Olympics as “Neutral Athletes” or “Neutral Team,” which they already did at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. Their men’s hockey team won the gold medal under the Olympic flag back then.
There were multiple reports about the state-sponsored systematic doping among the Russian athletes, and since 2017 there were several investigations that claimed the same. During the same year, IOC suspended the Russian Olympic Committee, accusing it of helping and not preventing the systematic doping in Russia, and hiding the data from the international regulatory institutions.
The Russians defended themselves, implying that they are a target of a politically motivated trial that intended to hurt the reputation of the entire country and undermine its efforts in organizing the soccer World Cup in 2018. According to the Russian government, that was all a part of a large-scale plan, based solely on political motives.
BREAKING NEWS: Russia’s four-year doping ban from global sports was cut in half by a Swiss court, but its teams will still miss the next two Olympics. pic.twitter.com/y9Jx2Iy98Y
— Apex World News (@apexworldnews) December 17, 2020
On the other hand, WADA denied such allegations, adding that they strictly followed already established guidelines and codes, presenting cases of several Russian athletes who allegedly admitted that they were a part of systematic doping organized and helped by the state.
The Russian Anti-Doping Agency is to pay a fine of $1.27 million to WADA.
What is the problem for all the parties now, is that Russia got the men’s volleyball World Championship organization for 2022. In the current situation, that championship should change the host country, but there are no such indications even after the CAS’ decision.