Russia’s Olympic dream in tatters as ban upheld

The Court for Arbitration of Sport has upheld the ban handed to Russian athletes by the International Association of Athletics Federations. 

Earlier this year, the IAAF banned all Russian track and field athletes from competition after an independent report found evidence of widespread state-sponsored doping.

In the wake of the ban, 68 Russian athletes and the Russian Olympic Committee appealed against it, but CAS has ruled that the ban will stand.

"The CAS panel confirmed that the Russian Olympic Committee is not entitled to nominate Russian track and field athletes to compete at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games considering that they are not eligible to participate under the IAAF competition rules," revealed a spokesman.

However, this does not completely remove Russia’s involvement from the Rio Olympic Games. The International Olympic Committee is still considering investigating whether or not to ban all Russian athletes.

Meanwhile, IAAF president Sebastian Coe has welcomed the judgement, which backs up the federation’s strong stance against doping.

"While we are thankful that our rules and our power to uphold our rules and the anti-doping code have been supported, this is not a day for triumphant statements,” Coe is quoted as saying in a press release.

"I didn't come into this sport to stop athletes from competing. It is our federation's instinctive desire to include, not exclude. Beyond Rio the IAAF Taskforce will continue to work with Russia to establish a clean safe environment for its athletes so that its federation and team can return to international recognition and competition."