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ITF says never received information from WADA on Russian tennis players’ data alterations

The international tennis body stressed that Russian tennis players were not mentioned in the McLaren Report

MOSCOW, December 10. /TASS, Andrey Kartashov/. The International Tennis Federation (ITF) did not receive information on Russian tennis players from WADA (the World Anti-Doping Agency) regarding reported manipulations with the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory, the ITF said in a statement for TASS.

The WADA Executive Committee (ExCo) approved on Monday the recommendations of its Compliance Review Committee (CRC) to cancel the compliance status of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) as well as to strip Russia of the right to participate in major international sports tournaments, including the Olympics and World Championships, for the period of four years.

The statement from the ITF states that according to the WADA decision on Monday, "Russian athletes will only be eligible to compete in major competitions subject to satisfying certain conditions listed by the WADA Compliance Review Committee."

"The ITF is not currently aware of any Russian tennis player having been mentioned in incriminating circumstances in the McLaren Report (2016) nor has any evidence been provided to the ITF at this time in relation to the manipulation, alteration or deletion of anti-doping data in the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory’s database," according to the ITF statement.

"WADA’s decision is subject to appeal by RUSADA," the statement said. "For that reason, we will not comment further until that process has reached its final conclusion and we have had the opportunity to review its outcome."

The WADA ExCo also ruled on Monday that Russia must not host, or bid for hosting any major international sports tournament in the four-year period. Russian state officials, as well as the staff of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC), were banned from attending all major international sports tournaments for the period of four years.

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency has the right to appeal WADA’s ruling within a period of 21 days. In case RUSADA decides against submitting an appeal, it can be also filed by heads of the Russian Olympic and Paralympic Committees as well as by heads of the international sports federations.

On November 25, the WADA Compliance Review Committee (CRC) reiterated its previous recommendation for the world anti-doping body’s Executive Committee to strip RUSADA of its compliance status and came up with a recommendation of additional sanctions against Russian sports.

The world’s governing anti-doping body announced on September 23 that it had initiated a probe into the compliance status of RUSADA with the Code of the organization based on the inconsistencies discovered in the data from the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory.

Specialists from WADA were granted access to the database of the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory in January this year and copied 24 terabytes of information on Russian athletes’ doping samples collected between 2012 and 2015. WADA experts finished their work to retrieve doping samples from the Moscow Lab on April 30 having collected 2,262 doping samples in 4,524 containers (Samples A and B).