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CAS’s ruling on Lovchev’s suspension unlikely to affect decision on Russian weightlifters

July 15, 15:28 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The CAS ruled on Friday to uphold the four-year suspension of Russian weightlifter Lovchev for doping abuse
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Alexei Lovchev

Alexei Lovchev


MOSCOW, July 15. /TASS/. The ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on weightlifter Alexei Lovchev won’t affect a decision on Russian weightlifters’ participation in the Rio Olympics, Lovchev’s attorney Artyom Patsev told TASS on Friday.

The CAS ruled on Friday to uphold the four-year suspension of Russian weightlifter Lovchev for doping abuse.

"Yes, the CAS has kept Lovchev’s disqualification in force but this can’t affect a decision on whether Russian weightlifters will be barred from the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro," Patsev said.

"Disqualifications, theoretical so far, may be linked only with the samples from Beijing and London," the attorney said.

The participation of Russian weightlifters in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil has been thrown into question after the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) announced it would suspend the Russian weightlifting federation for a 12-month period, should the rechecks of doping probes collected at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics provide at least three positive results.

Earlier, sample B probes of Russian female weightlifters Marina Shainova and Nadezhda Evstyukhina, who are the 2008 Olympics silver and bronze medalists respectively, tested positive for doping substances.

Lovchev, the gold medalist of the 2015 World Championships in Houston, was suspended in late December from competitions on suspicion of violating anti-doping regulations.

The athlete’s A sample taken during the World Championships in Houston showed the traces of ipamorelin - a substance stimulating growth hormones.

Later, Lovchev’s B sample opened in Montreal also tested positive. As a result, Lovchev was disqualified by the International Weightlifting Federation for four years. The athlete insisted that the permitted preparation ecdisten had been found in his body system.

As Lovchev’s attorney said, the Russian weightlifter has been sacrificed to the stability of the anti-doping system.

"We’re waiting for the CAS documents as it is necessary to study and understand the reasons [behind the ruling] and the arguments used by the CAS as the guidance," Patsev said.

"I presume that Alexei was simply sacrificed to some anti-doping stability of the laboratory system. If it were recognized now that this is a false positive test, the Montreal laboratory would have immediately lost its accreditation. This would be undesirable before the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro because they are planning to do a large amount of work there," the attorney said.

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