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Russia appeal verdict against four-year ban revealed on Thursday

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Olympic and Russian flags at the Sochi Winter Olympics. Photo: February 2014
Athletes will not be allowed to compete under the Russian flag at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics or Beijing 2022 Winter Games

Russia’s appeal against a four-year ban from all major sporting events will be decided on Thursday.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) reinstated Russia in 2018 after a three-year ban for a doping scandal.

But in December 2019, Wada declared Russia’s anti-doping agency non-compliant with its code.

If upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas), there would be no Russia team at the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games or the 2022 World Cup.

Russia has been banned from competing as a nation in athletics since 2015.

The Cas ruling will be binding and if they decide not to lift the ban, only athletes who can prove they are clean competitors would be permitted to compete in Tokyo next year and would have to do so as so-called “neutral” athletes.

A total of 168 Russian athletes competed under a neutral flag at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

Wada’s executive committee made the unanimous decision to impose the ban on Russia last year after Russia’s Anti-Doping Agency (Rusada) was declared non-compliant for manipulating laboratory data handed over to investigators in January 2019.

It had to hand over data to Wada as a condition of its reinstatement in 2018 after a three-year suspension for its vast state-sponsored doping scandal.

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