IAAF turns down 67 Russian applications to compete as individuals
By Dimitriy Rogovitskiy
MOSCOW (Reuters) - The IAAF's Doping Review Board has turned down applications from 67 Russian athletes to compete internationally as "neutral" individuals, following a blanket ban on the country's track and field athletes for systematic doping.
The All-Russian Athletics Federation (ARAF) said in a statement on Sunday it was informed by the sport's world governing IAAF that only one application had been approved, from long jumper Darya Klishina, out of 68 requests made.
"The rest of the 67 athletes who have been approved by the ARAF's board as they have fulfilled the federation's criteria to compete in the Olympics have been refused," ARAF said on its website (www.rusathletics.com).
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) suspended Russia's track and field athletes last year after a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report uncovered systematic state-sponsored doping in the country.
The ban was extended last month, which ruled Russia's athletes out of next month's Rio Olympics, although ARAF has appealed against the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.. CAS is due to rule on the case by July 21.
Individual Russian athletes, however, could apply to the IAAF for exemptions to compete as a "neutral athlete" if they could prove they were not involved in the system and were subjected to drug tests outside the country.
However, the 25-year-old Klishina, who finished 10th in the long jump at last year's world championships in Beijing, was the only one of the 68 athletes approved by ARAF who has been cleared by the IAAF to compete internationally as a "neutral".
Klishina's was one of 136 appeals to the IAAF under the neutral athlete provisions and most of the applications had been reviewed, the IAAF had said on Saturday. Continued...