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Sports

Rio ban for Russian athletics team upheld

media Two time Olympic gold medallist Elena Isinbayeva will miss out on Rio Olympics after the CAS rejcted Russia's appeal against IAAF's ruling. Reuters/Dylan Martinez

Russian athletics was dealt a heavy blow today after the Court of Arbitration for Sport today dismissed their appeal against a ban imposed by the athletics governing body IAAF over state-orchestrated doping.

With this ruling, the Russian track and field team comprising 67 athletes will miss out on Rio Olympics which start on 5 August.

The IAAF welcomed the ruling and stated that it has created a level playing field for athletes.

As expected, Russia slammed the ruling with the country’s Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko terming it a "subjective and politicised" decision with no legal basis.

The ruling will see Russian stars such as pole vault world-record-holder and two-time Olympic gold medallist Yelena Isinbayeva and hurdler Sergey Shubenkov miss out on Rio.

'Funeral for athletics'

Isinbayeva said the ruling would deal a mortal blow to international athletics. She said the decision was a political order and a funeral for athletics.

The IAAF had suspended Russia in November following an inquiry which first mentioned “state-sponsored” doping.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) has called for Russia to be completely banned from the Rio Games.

A powerhouse at the Olympics, Russia was the second most successful athletics nation at the London Games, behind the US.
 

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