Russia Escape Blanket Team Ban From Rio Olympics

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Rio de Janeiro: The decision follows Monday’s publication of the WADA-commmissioned McLaren report, which uncovered widespread state-sponsored doping in the country during the 2014 Winter Games and dating back to 2011.

Russia’s track and field athletes had already seen their ban – in place since November 2015 – upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport on appeal last week, but the IOC today opted against enforcing a ban that would have extended to cover the entire Russian team of 387 athletes.

The IOC had vowed earlier this week to ‘explore all legal possibilities’ before reaching their conclusion and have decided to leave the decision with international federations, who will determine if individual athletes are clean.

Last week’s track and field ruling does not affect Yuliya Stepanova, a key whistleblower in lifting the lid on Russian doping, or Darya Klishina, who trains outside the Russian system in the United States. The pair will compete under the Olympic flag at the Games.

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