US anti-doping CEO: Russia verdict blow to rights of clean athletes

The International Olympic Committee decided against an all-out ban over state-run doping in Russia. In photo: Travis T Tygart, chief executive of US anti-doping agency on November 12, 2012. Photograph:( AFP )

AFP Los Angeles, United States Jul 24, 2016, 05.46 PM (IST)
US anti-doping chiefs blasted the International Olympic Committee for creating "a confusing mess" over the Russian doping scandal, claiming they lacked "decisive leadership" by opting against a blanket Rio ban for Russia.

The IOC decided against an all-out ban over state-run doping and left international sports federations with the job of clearing athletes for the Games which start on August 5.

"Disappointingly, in response to the most important moment for clean athletes and the integrity of the Olympic Games, the IOC has refused to take decisive leadership," said Travis T Tygart, the chief executive of USADA, the American anti-doping body.

"The decision regarding Russian participation and the confusing mess left in its wake is a significant blow to the rights of clean athletes."

"It is so frustrating that in this incredibly important moment, they would pass the baton to sports federations who may lack the adequate expertise or collective will to appropriately address the situation within the short window prior to the Games. The conflict of interest is glaring."

USADA also hit out at the decision to ban doping whistleblower Yuliya Stepanova from taking part in the Olympics.

"The decision to refuse her entry in to the Games is incomprehensible and contrary to CAS precedent. The attempt to enforce it will undoubtedly deter whistleblowers in the future from coming forward," said Tygart.