Isinbayeva, Ukhov lead 68 in appeal

Russia names athletics team for Rio, hopes that CAS will lift ban imposed by IAAF

MOSCOW • Russia has named a Rio Olympics track and field team, who are hoping an International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) ban on them competing will be lifted by sport's highest court later this month.

The 68 athletes include gold medallists Yelena Isinbayeva and Ivan Ukhov.

The All-Russian Athletics Federation (Araf) on Tuesday published a list of athletes it said had met its criteria for taking part in next month's Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

It said the preliminary team were verified by the head coaches council and its general committee.

As well as twice Olympic pole vault champion Isinbayeva (2004 and 2008) and high jump winner Ukhov (2012), they include world 110 metres hurdles champion Sergei Shubenkov and former European long jump title holder Darya Klishina.

Russian track and field athletes are currently suspended by the IAAF from competing in international competitions.

CHALLENGING THE IAAF BAN

The Russian Olympic Committee... are appealing to CAS in Lausanne concerning the overall legality of adding extra criteria for the participation of sportsmen competing at the Olympics. This claim was supported by all 68 athletes.

THE ALL-RUSSIAN ATHLETICS FEDERATION, in its statement on the selection of athletes for the Rio Olympics.

However, they have opposed the ban, which was imposed after a World Anti-Doping Agency report showed widespread, state-sponsored doping, and taken their case to sport's highest court.

Last Saturday, the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and the 68 athletes filed appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the IAAF ban and asked to be allowed to take part in international competitions in time for the Olympics.

The three parties agreed an expedited procedure, with a final decision due by July 21, CAS has said.

"Each sportsman has sent an individual request to compete in the Olympic Games which will be checked by the IAAF, as Araf is now not a member of the IAAF," said a statement on Araf's official website on Tuesday.

"Also, as has already been published, the Russian Olympic Committee has agreed its position with Araf and are appealing to CAS in Lausanne concerning the overall legality of adding extra criteria for the participation of sportsmen competing at the Olympics. This claim was supported by all 68 athletes."

Russian athletes say they are being punished despite not failing drug tests and that they should be eligible to compete at the Rio Olympics.

The Rio Games start on Aug 5 with the IAAF having said only a handful of Russian athletes, who meet a number of criteria including being repeatedly tested for dope outside Russia, would be allowed to compete there.

If CAS rules in favour of the athletes, there will be another issue to resolve as the International Olympic Committee's deadline for them to achieve the qualifying criteria for the Games, July 11, would have passed.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 07, 2016, with the headline 'Isinbayeva, Ukhov lead 68 in appeal'. Print Edition | Subscribe