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MOSCOW, August 19. /TASS/. Great support for two-time Olympic pole vault Olympic champion Yelena Isinbayeva expressed by foreign athletes has confirmed that the decision of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) on banning her from the Rio Olympics was unfair, Alexander Zhukov, the President of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), told TASS on Friday.
Isinbayeva, 34, announced her retirement earlier on Friday at a news conference in Rio de Janeiro, which is hosting the Summer Olympic Games.The Russian athlete was elected to the International Olympic Committee’s athlete’s commission on Thursday. She also noted that she would consider putting forward her candidacy for the post of president of the All-Russia Athletic Federation (ARAF).
"Yelena has completed her career, but now she will represent athletes’ interests in the IOC, which is very important," Zhukov said. "This is some residue from the obvious injustice, she was not allowed to draw a line under this. However, the fact that so many athletes voted for her proves once again that the IAAF’s actions were unfair."‘
"Yelena is not just a remarkable athlete, she is a legendary athlete, and we are very grateful to her for all she has done," he added.
Isinbayeva was unable to compete at the Rio Olympics as Russian track and field athletes have been banned from the Olympics after the All-Russian Athletic Federation was disqualified due to doping allegations.
On July 21, the Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected a lawsuit filed by the Russian Olympic Committee and 68 track and field athletes to fight the decision by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) to bar them from the Olympics.
Isinbayeva won the Olympic gold in 2004 and 2008 and was also the bronze medalist in the 2012 Olympic Games. The pole vault queen set 28 world records during her sports career.