TOKYO, July 28. /TASS/. The team of Russian athletes in Tokyo plans to lodge an official complaint with the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) about an incident between tennis player Daniil Medvedev and a journalist from Chile, Konstantin Vybornov, a spokesman for Team ROC (the Russian Olympic Committee), told TASS on Wednesday.
Russian tennis star Medvedev asked the International Tennis Federation (ITF) on Wednesday to strip the accreditation of a Chilean journalist, who claimed that Team ROC ‘cheated’ on its uniforms at the Olympics in Tokyo. Medvedev and his teammate Karen Khachanov reached the quarterfinals of the Olympics in Tokyo in the men’s singles competition.
"We have been expecting provocative questions to be addressed in regard to our athletes," Vybornov said. "On the whole, we enjoy a very respectful treatment of our national team, but at the same time, we encounter occasional persons who unashamedly provoke us and try to knock our athletes off balance."
"In the case of Daniil Medvedev, we are talking about Chilean journalist Sebastian Nahmias," he continued. "He has been trying for the second day in a row to incite a scandal in regard to our team asking over and over again the same questions and in the same manner."
"It has nothing to do with translation problems, everyone understood him quite clearly, and the organizers issued a warning to this strange colleague yesterday and had to walk him away from the mixed zone for the media today," Vybornov said. "By the way, Medvedev acted in a very dignified manner under unpleasant circumstances."
"The hub of our Olympic team will not leave this incident unattended, and we are extremely concerned with this journalist as he travels on purpose between all arenas, where our athletes are competing, and keeps harassing them," according to Vybornov.
"This is why after having collected all of the necessary information, we plan to submit an official request with the Local Organizing Committee [Tokyo-2020 LOC] and the IOC," he stated. "Our goal is simple, and it is about preventing such incidents in the future."
As of today, the Russian national team of athletes in Tokyo — participating as Team ROC (the Russian Olympic Committee) due to international sanctions against Russian sports — boasts seven gold, eight silver, and five bronze medals.
Russia at Tokyo-2020
On July 6, the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) published an approved list of 335 athletes who were selected to represent the country at the Summer Olympic Games. The Olympic delegation of Russian athletes in Tokyo includes 185 female and 150 male athletes.
Russian athletes are competing in Tokyo under the flag and logo of the Russian National Olympic Committee (ROC) instead of the Russian national flag and state emblem. The national anthem of Russia is also under sanctions at the Olympics in Japan.
Sanctions against Russian sports
On December 17, 2020, the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland’s Lausanne partially upheld WADA’s (the World Anti-Doping Agency) previous ruling on a number of sanctions against Russian sports.
Following the CAS decision, Russian athletes were deprived of their right to participate in all World Championships, Olympic and Paralympic Games under the national flag of Russia for a two-year period.
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.