Stepanova challenges IOC ruling on doping ban

Doping whistleblower Yuliya Stepanova has questioned the “unfair” decision by the International Olympic Committee to ban her from the Rio Olympics.

The 800m runner’s testimony helped shed light on the scale of doping in Russian sport, and she was to compete under a neutral flag in Rio next month.

But the IOC ruled that she should not be allowed to take part as she had previously failed a doping test.

Stepanova said the IOC decision was “based on wrong and untrue statements”.

In a statement, the 30-year-old claimed the IOC decision would put off future whistleblowers from coming forward and that it contradicted previous decisions by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

A covering letter to IOC director general Christophe de Kepper called for the organisation “to review their decision on the basis of the information provided

The IOC on Sunday decided against enforcing a blanket ban from Rio 2016 for all Russian sportspeople. Anti-doping bodies had called for tough action following the release last week of the McLaren report, which detailed widespread, state-sponsored doping in the country.

Instead, the IOC said it would be up to individual sports federations to decide which athletes were eligible for Rio – but that anyone who had been sanctioned for doping should not be able to go.

It also said Stepanova should not be allowed to compete, despite her having earlier won the support of athletics’ governing body, the IAAF.

Stepanova and husband Vitaly, a former Russian Anti-Doping Agency official, played a key role in the chain of events that led to the IOC having to rule on Russian sport’s place at the Rio Games.

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