IAAF upholds Russian Olympic ban

By iSportconnect | June 17, 2016

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) have decided that Russian athletes cannot compete in Rio at the Olympics.

The ban that was enforced in November 2015, will not be lifted, and as such all Russian track and field athletes cannot compete.

It comes after a damning recent WADA report which outlined the lengths that some Russian athletes and officials went to to prevent international drug testers from doing their job in the country.

However there is a small chance that some Russian athletes, who can prove that they are clean, could compete at the Games.

The IOC will meet on the 21st to discuss how to proceed after the IAAF’s decision. President Thomas Bach said recently he was confident clean Russian athletes could compete at the Games, but it is not clear how this could happen. The IOC have already said they would be unlikely to accept Russian athletes competing under the Russian Olympic Committee flag instead of a Russian one.

There is a small chance that the IOC may even over-rule the IAAF’s verdict, but it would be a contentious decision to openly defy one of the biggest international federations, particularly as the vote to exclude the Russians by the IAAF was unanimous.

If a blanket ban is enforced, the athletes who can prove they are clean, will almost certainly appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

iSportconnect spoke exclusively to CAS’ Secretary General, Matthieu Reeb, who said the organisation was prepared to hear urgent cases right up to the opening ceremony in Rio.