The Court of Arbitration for Sport (“CAS”) has upheld Darya Klishina’s appeal against the decision of the IAAF to ban her from competing in the Rio Olympic Games. Following the CAS Judgment the IAAF confirmed that Klishina is cleared to compete in the Rio Olympic Games, making her the only Russian track and field athlete to be permitted to do so.
The CAS hearing confirmed that the “new information” that led to the IAAF decision to ban Klishina came from (as suspected) from WADA and McLaren. Apparently this “new information” concerned claims of evidence that some of Klishina’s drug test samples since 1st January 2014 had been subject to “tampering”. CAS nonetheless ruled that Klishina had
“established that she was subject to fully compliant drug-testing in- and out-of-competition outside of Russia.”
This spiteful episode has backfired on Professor McLaren, on the IAAF and on WADA, whose attempt to ban Klishina at the last moment is exposed as based on improper grounds. Their already tattered credibility is further damaged as they have provided further proof of the essentially political anti-Russian agenda they have been following. Klishina herself said as much in her statement where she spoke of how
“I am falling victim to those who created a system of manipulating our beautiful sport and is guilty of using it for political purposes…….I cannot help but feel betrayed by a system that is not focused on keeping the sport clean and supporting rank-and-file athletes, but rather seeking victories outside sport arenas.”
The next big CAS decision will be the one which will decide whether or not to uphold the IPC’s ban on Russia’s Paralympic team. With CAS Judgments now increasingly speaking of the “incomplete nature” of the McLaren report and saying that it is unfit for use as evidence to ban individual athletes the stakes are becoming very high. If CAS rules against the IPC McLaren’s, WADA’s, the IAAF’s and the IPC’s credibility will be finally shattered. The stops are no doubt now being pulled out to make sure that doesn’t happen.