18 Jan 2019

Drugs: WADA recovers doping data from Russians

9:52 am on 18 January 2019

"This is a major breakthrough for clean sport," said WADA Ppresident Craig Reedie.

"It shows we are continuing to make real progress that simply would not have happened without the 20 September executive committee decision."

Russia's anti-doping agency, RUSADA, was suspended in 2015 after a WADA- commissioned report outlined evidence of systematic, state-backed doping in Russian athletics.

Another report the following year documented more than 1000 doping cases across dozens of sports, notably at the Winter Olympics that Russia hosted in Sochi in 2014.

With the data secured, albeit two weeks after an agreed deadline, WADA's executive committee will consider recommendations on RUSADA's status from its compliance committee.

WADA president Craig Reedie

WADA president Craig Reedie. Photo: International Paralympic Committee

Were RUSADA to lose its accreditation again, so soon after being reinstated to howls of outrage from athletes and administrators, Russian sport would face the prospect of new sanctions.

Russia was banned from sending an official team to last year's Winter Games in Pyeongchang and many Russians were excluded from the 2016 Rio Games.

Most Russian athletes have also been excluded from international track and field competitions since 2015.

The executive committee will make their ruling on January 22nd.

WADA will examine the data for any sign of tampering, while Russian authorities must ensure any re-analysis of samples required by WADA is completed, in an accredited laboratory, by June 30th.

WADA said data from the laboratory would be crucial to building strong cases against cheats and exonerate other athletes suspected of having taken part in doping.

Russia has accepted there was extensive doping in the country but its authorities have continued to deny any of it was state-sponsored.