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Head of Polish Draughts Federation apologizes for incident with Russian flag’s removal

During the players’ fourth-round encounter on Tuesday, one of the organizers removed the Russian flag from the table on the order from the World Anti-Doping Agency
Tamara Tansykkuzhina and Natalia Sadowska EPA-EFE/LESZEK SZYMANSKI
Tamara Tansykkuzhina and Natalia Sadowska
© EPA-EFE/LESZEK SZYMANSKI

MOSCOW, April 28. /TASS/. Damian Reszka, president of the Polish Draughts Federation, extended his apologies with regards to a Russian national flag having been swiped during the 2021 Women’s World Draughts Championship in Warsaw, the Polish-based Sport.onet website announced on Wednesday.

Due to the current sanctions by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), Russian athletes are prohibited until December 2022 from participating in world championships, and Olympic and Paralympic Games under the national flag and to the tune of their national anthem.

The final match series of the 2021 Women's World Draughts Championship, which has been organized annually since 1973, is being hosted by Warsaw between April 23 and May 3 and includes reigning World Champion Tamara Tansykkuzhina of Russia and Natalia Sadowska of Poland vying for the new champion’s title.

According to Sport.onet reports, during the players’ fourth-round encounter on Tuesday, "one of the organizers appeared on the web and first peeled off a sticker with the Russian flag stuck to the table. It's not over yet. Then the flag on the table was also taken."

Following the incident Russia’s Tansykkuzhina, who is a six-time world champion, lost the 4th round to her Polish opponent Sadowska.

The Polish-based website cited Reszka as apologizing for the incident as, according to him, they were forced to do it immediately during the match upon a request from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which threatened to ban the World Draughts Federation (FMJD).

The 2021 Women’s World Draughts Championship in Warsaw consists of nine rounds with each of them offering 12 points to the winner. The first competitor to earn 54 points wins the World Championship.

Sanctions against Russian sports

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland’s Lausanne partially upheld on December 17, 2020 WADA’s (the World Anti-Doping Agency) previous ruling on a number of sanctions against Russian sports.

According to the CAS decision, Russian athletes were deprived of their right to participate in all world championships, and Olympic and Paralympic Games under the national flag of Russia for the two-year period.

The national anthem of Russia was also excluded from being played at international sports tournaments over the next two years, including at the upcoming Olympic Games in Japan this summer.

The ruling of the Swiss-based court also stripped Russia of the right to bid for the organization of all international sports tournaments for a period of two years. WADA’s sanctions will be in force until December 2022.