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Russian athletes Sidorova, Ivanyuk officially invited to 2021 Diamond League stage in Doha

The 2021 edition consists of 14 stages and the capital of Qatar, Doha, hosts one of them on May 28
Anzhelika Sidorova Natalia Fedosenko/TASS
Anzhelika Sidorova
© Natalia Fedosenko/TASS

MOSCOW, May 4. Russian track and field athletes Anzhelika Sidorova (pole vault) and Ilya Ivanyuk (high jump) have been granted official invitations to participate in the 2021 Diamond League tournament’s stage in Qatar’s Doha this month, athletes’ manager Pavel Voronkov told TASS on Tuesday.

On April 30, the world’s governing body of track and field athletics, World Athletics, approved neutral status permissions for four Russian athletes, allowing them to participate in international tournaments.

Among the athletes at the issue were Russia’s three-time world champion in women’s high jump Maria Lasitskene, world champion in pole vault Anzhelika Sidorova, World Championship’s bronze medalist in high jump Ilya Ivanyuk and pole vaulter Aksana Gataullina.

"Anzhelika Sidorova and her coach Svetlana Abramova, as well as Ilya Ivanyuk, were officially invited to the tournament in Doha," Voronkov said.

The 2021 Diamond League tournament is the 12th annual edition of outdoor track and field meetings, which are organized by World Athletics and run this year between May 23 and September 9. This 2021 edition consists of 14 stages and the capital of Qatar, Doha, hosts one of them on May 28.

World Athletics’ ANA status for Russian athletes

On March 18, the World Athletics Council announced a decision to reinstate "the Authorized Neutral Athlete (ANA) program for clean athletes from Russia." On March 31, the World Athletics Council published a list of guidelines on granting the ANA status to Russian track and field athletes this year.

The list of guidelines for Russian athletes’ ANA program included 12 provisions. According to one of the published provisions, the issuance of the ANA status for athletes over the age of 20 years requires a fee of $250, while athletes under the age of 20 must pay a fee of $100. The same amount was required for Russian track and field athletes last year, however, none of them was granted the neutral status in 2020.

Early last month, the world’s governing body of track and field athletics announced a decision to return to Russian athletes all required fees, paid for their neutral-status applications in 2020.

In 2021, no more than ten athletes will be able to get the ANA status to compete in major sporting events (Olympics, world championships and European U23 championships), according to a previous decision of World Athletics.

World Athletics suspended RusAF’s membership in November 2015, following a wave of anti-doping rules violations and formed a special mission on the issue. World Athletics, however, allowed clean athletes from Russia to participate in international tournaments under the neutral status or the Authorized Neutral Athlete (ANA) until the membership of the RusAF is reinstated. The ANA status prohibits Russian athletes from participating in all international track and field tournaments under the national flag.

The World Athletics Council announced on November 22, 2019 its decision to suspend RusAF’s reinstatement process based on charges brought by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU). According to World Athletics, the AIU charged RusAF on November 21, 2019 "with obstructing an investigation and provisionally suspended several senior federation officials for tampering and complicity."

In March 2020, the World Athletics Council ruled to fine RusAF $5 million for an alleged involvement of the previous executive administration’s attempt to forge official documents of high jumper Danil Lysenko. RusAF paid the fine on August 12, 2020.