Tokyo Olympics: White House to review anti-doping rules after Richardson ban

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Jul 08, 2021, 12:39 PM(IST)

Olympics: Sha'Carri Richardson not selected to US Tokyo relay team Photograph:( Reuters )

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"While the US government has a seat at the table to provide feedback, and will continue to speak up for athletes, we are ultimately bound to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules," he said in a statement.

American sprinter Sha'Carri Richardson on Tuesday was declined by USA Track & Field (USATF) to be a part of the 4x100-metre relay team for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo after she tested positive for cannabis use. However, the White House has decided to step in to review the anti-doping rules in sport on Wednesday.

ALSO READ: Tokyo Olympics: Sha'Carri Richardson not selected to US relay team after testing positive for cannabis

As per Richardson, she used the banned substance to cope with the death of her mother. The 21-year-old sprinter was expected to be one of the biggest stars for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics but is unable to compete in the individual 100m event as her suspension wiped out her win at the trials.

"We know the rules are where they are, maybe we should take another look at them," White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a CNN interview, adding that President Joe Biden had paid particular attention to her after the tragedy she endured.

"We certainly have to respect the role of the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) and the US Olympic Committee and the decisions they make," said Psaki. "But it is sad, and we do wish her luck and look forward to seeing her running, running as the fastest woman in the world, and for years to come."

In response, USADA CEO Travis Tygart said the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) was the global arbiter.

"While the US government has a seat at the table to provide feedback, and will continue to speak up for athletes, we are ultimately bound to the WADA rules," he said in a statement.

"This is true even in sad and tough cases like this one, where we might take a different approach if the choice was ours to make."

USATF said on Tuesday that its "heartfelt understanding lies with Sha'Carri" but that out of fairness for other athletes it had declined to select her for the team.

(Inputs from Agency) 

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