No 'automatic' Olympic participation for 28 cleared Russians - IOC

Lausanne, Switzerland Published: Feb 01, 2018, 12:55 PM(IST)

The 2018 Winter Olympics is scheduled to take place from 9 to 25 February 2018 in Pyeongchang County, South Korea. Photograph:( Others )

The International Olympic Committee said the 28 Russians who had their life bans lifted by sport's top court CAS on Thursday did not "automatically" allow them to compete at the Pyeongchang Games.

"Not being sanctioned does not automatically confer the privilege of an invitation" to the 2018 Games in South Korea, the IOC explained in a statement.

The Olympic rulers said they took note of the Court of Arbitration for Sport's verdict "with satisfaction on the one hand and disappointment on the other".

CAS upheld the appeals of 28 of the 43 Russians accused of doping at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, lifting their life bans and reinstating their results form Sochi, and freeing them to possibly compete at Pyeonghcang.

The other 11 had their life bans overturned, but their Pyeongchang ban maintained.

The court ruled there was "insufficient" evidence that the athletes had benefited from a system of state-sponsored doping at Sochi.

The IOC warned that CAS's verdict on the 28 "may have a serious impact on the future fight against doping".

"Therefore, the IOC will analyse the reasoned decisions very carefully once they are available and consider consequences, including an appeal to the Swiss Federal Tribunal."

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