Athletics: Coe is new IAAF chief, Singapore's Tang fails in bid to become its treasurer

Britain's two-time Olympic champion Sebastian Coe is the new IAAF chief.
Britain's two-time Olympic champion Sebastian Coe is the new IAAF chief. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - Singapore Athletics president Tang Weng Fei lost his bid to become treasurer of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) on Wednesday at the IAAF Congress in Beijing.

Tang, 61, was up against German Athletics Association president Clemens Prokop, Royal Spanish Athletics Federation chief Jose Maria Odriozola and Oceania Athletics Association president Geoff Gardner. The post went to Odriozola, who secured 102 votes.

Tang, an oil trader, was seeking to become only the second Singaporean member of the IAAF council, after local athletics veteran Maurice Nicholas, who was a member of the IAAF council from 1981 to 1995.


The highlight of the congress though, was the presidential race between two of the sport's legends, Ukranian former pole vaulter Sergey Bubka and Britain's two-time Olympic champion Sebastian Coe. Coe beat Bubka by 115 to 92 votes, and replaces long-time IAAF chief Lamine Diack, who had held the post since 1999.

Bubka, who also entered the vice-presidential race, was re-elected as one of the world body's four vice-presidents. He is joined by Qatar's Dahlan Al Hamad, Cameroon's Hamad Kalkaba Malboum and Cuba's Alberto Juantorena.

Coe and members of the new council face an uphill task to restore the reputation of their drug-tainted sport upon their inauguration. For years, there have been suspicions of elite athletes doping.

This month, the controversy intensified when reports from German broadcaster ARD/WDR and British newspaper The Sunday Times alleged that the IAAF had failed to investigate hundreds of dubious blood test results between 2001 and 2012.

Last week, the IAAF banned 28 athletes from the 2005 and 2007 World Championships after retrospective analysis of their urine samples.