Russian sports minister: 1% chance nation's athletes to go to Rio

Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko said, 'even though there is still a one per cent chance to make it to Rio, we will maintain the teams, the training process and the monetary maintenance.' Photograph:( Getty )

Reuters Moscow, Russia Jul 23, 2016, 05.01 PM (IST)
There is just a one per cent probability that the International Olympic Committee will allow Russian track-and-field athletes to take part in the Rio Olympics, Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko said today.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected Russia's appeal against a doping ban for its entire athletics team from the Rio Olympics on Thursday.

"Of all the things I'm going to say about athletics, even though there's still one per cent chance (that they will go to the olympics), but actually first of all we're going to keep everything we should of the maintenance of our teams, the training process, the monetary maintenance. Until the end of the year they're going to keep working in this way and they're not going to have any problems," Mutko said in response to a reporter's question at a news conference at Russia's Football Union.

Doping scandals have plagued the build-up to the world's biggest multi-sports event, with Russia potentially facing a complete Games ban following the publication of the McLaren report on July 18.

The report revealed evidence of a systematic and widespread state-sponsored doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.