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Two Russian wrestlers test positive for meldonium — source

March 21, 15:26 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Evgeny Saleyev wrestles in the 82 kg weight category while Sergey Semyonov wrestles in the 130 kg category
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© Donat Sorokin/TASS

MOSCOW, March 21. /TASS/. Russian Greco-Roman wrestlers Evgeny Saleyev and Sergey Semyonov have tested positive for meldonium banned from January 1 this year, a source familiar with the matter told TASS on Monday.

The press office of the Russian Wrestling Federation has said that if the fact of violations is confirmed, the relevant information will be posted on the organization’s website and sent out upon the completion of the official probe.

Saleyev who wrestles in the 82 kg weight category is a silver medal winner at the 2014 World Championship in Tashkent and a winner of the European Games in Baku.

Semyonov who wrestles in the 130 kg category is a silver prize winner of the 2015 World Cup.

The drug meldonium (mildronate) was included in the list of preparations banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency from January 1, 2016.

Overall, 102 athletes have already tested positive for meldonium. The names of 15 athletes suspended for the use of the banned preparation are already known. They include 10 Russians. These are speed skater Pavel Kulizhnikov, biathlete Eduard Latypov, cyclist Eduard Vorganov, figure skater Ekaterina Bobrova, tennis player Maria Sharapova, short-track skaters Semyon Elistratov and Ekaterina Konstantinova, volleyball player Alexander Markin and rugby players Alexey and Alena Mikhaltsov.

Russian swimmer Yulia Yefimova was also suspended from competitions over the breach of anti-doping rules. According to TASS information, she tested positive for meldonium.

A source also told TASS on Thursday that this substance had been found in the doping sample of Russian bobsledder Nadezhda Sergeeva.

TASS also reported on four athletes suspected of meldonium use. They are Nadezhda Kotlyarova, Olga Vovk, Gulshat Fazletdinova and Andrey Minzhulin.

The presence of the meldonium formula in the athlete’s blood during and between competitions is a violation of anti-doping rules. The substance belongs to S4 class on the WADA blacklist (hormones and metabolic modulators).

Meanwhile, the drug producer, the Latvian firm Grindex said earlier on its website that "Mildronate is widely used in the clinical practice. During increased physical activity, it restores the oxygen balance of tissue cells as well as it activates the metabolic processes that results in lower requirements of oxygen consumption for energy production. Mildronate is widely recognized by health care professionals and patients, and this may include athletes as well."

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