World Athletics acknowledges Russia made 'steady progress' but not enough to lift 2015 doping ban

The global governing body's council accepted the recommendation from the Task Force established to monitor Russia's efforts to turn its back on its doping-tainted past

Agence France-Presse November 18, 2021 09:08:14 IST
World Athletics acknowledges Russia made 'steady progress' but not enough to lift 2015 doping ban

Rune Andersen, head of the Task Force, in his report accepted that "RUSAF has made steady progress towards meeting the conditions set for its reinstatement to membership of World Athletics". AP File

Paris: World Athletics on Wednesday acknowledged that Russia had made "steady progress" in meeting the requirements to return to international competition but not enough to lift the ban imposed in 2015 for systematic state doping.

The global governing body's council accepted the recommendation from the Task Force established to monitor Russia's efforts to turn its back on its doping-tainted past.

RUSAF, Russian athletics' ruling body, was initially kicked out of World Athletics six years ago after a damning World Anti-Doping Agency report identified "a deeply-rooted culture of doping".

For the athletics superpower to return it had to meet a series of strict conditions including: establishing a culture of zero tolerance and an effective anti-doping structure.

Rune Andersen, head of the Task Force, in his report accepted that "RUSAF has made steady progress towards meeting the conditions set for its reinstatement to membership of World Athletics".

He added: "The key milestones to date have been met, as well as the various key performance indicators set out in the Reinstatement Plan."

Anderson noted the new RUSAF leadership had shown "a genuine commitment" to lead this change away from doping "and ensure it becomes deep-rooted in Russian athletics".

But he warned: "There are still people in Russian athletics who have not embraced this new culture, and there is still much work for RUSAF to do to ensure that they do not exercise influence".

Another factor in upholding the ban was the status of Russia's anti-doping agency.

RUSADA was declared by WADA to be non-compliant in 2019 after doctoring doping tests from its Moscow laboratory.

An initial four-year ban was reduced to two years by the Court of Arbitration for Sport last December.

While Russia is banned, athletes from the country have been able to compete under a neutral banner once they have proved they were drug free, as a handful did at the Tokyo Olympics this year.

Updated Date:

also read

'Blow to clean athletes': Condemnation as Russia doping ban cut from four to two years
Sports

'Blow to clean athletes': Condemnation as Russia doping ban cut from four to two years

The CAS judgement comes after WADA hit Russia with the four-year ban last year for doping non-compliance after finding data handed over from its tainted Moscow laboratory had been manipulated.

USADA chief Travis Tygart says WADA's decision allowing Russian athletes to compete as individuals is blow to clean sportspersons
Sports

USADA chief Travis Tygart says WADA's decision allowing Russian athletes to compete as individuals is blow to clean sportspersons

Travis Tygart, the USADA chief, says Russia has only been emboldened by previous sanctions for its doping violations and the four-year ban imposed on Monday will do nothing to change its behaviour.

FIFA World Cup 2022: Russia still a contender to play in Qatar but anthem ban could hurt their chances
Sports

FIFA World Cup 2022: Russia still a contender to play in Qatar but anthem ban could hurt their chances

Anthem ban could hurt Russia if they play at World Cup in Qatar. In a study after Euro 2016, researchers concluded that “teams that sang national anthems with greater passion went on to concede fewer goals.”