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Russian curler’s B-sample tests positive for meldonium

The Russian Olympic Committee will launch a thorough investigation into all circumstances of the incident
Alexander Krushelnitsky Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS
Alexander Krushelnitsky
© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

PYEONGCHANG/South Korea/, February 20. /TASS/. B-sample of Russian curler Alexander Krushelnitsky has tested positive for meldonium, spokesman for the Olympic Athletes from Russia team Konstantin Vybornov said in a statement on Tuesday.

The sample was opened and tested on Monday. "The sample tested positive for meldonium, confirming the presence of the banned substance in his body," Vybornov said.

The Russian Olympic Committee will launch a thorough investigation into all circumstances of the incident, which will be conducted in the framework of Russia’s criminal code to "establish all details."

Krushelnitsky and Anastasia Bryzgalova won bronze in mixed doubles curling in PyeongChang.

The delegation of the team of Olympic Athletes from Russia (OAR) denies that Krushelnitsky could have been taking meldonium knowingly or systematically, Vybornov said in a statement.

"The samples taken from Alexander Krushelnitsky prior to the Olympic Games, on January 22, as well as the preceding samples, tested negative. Thus, the fact of a conscious or systematic use of the banned substance is not confirmed," says the statement

"We express sincere regrets over this incident. However, its circumstances at the moment don’t give an answer to the question how and when Meldonium could have got into the athlete’s body," Vybornov said.

He said the effect from the use of Meldonium is reached if it is used regularly, and metabolites remain in the human body nine months after the person stopped taking it. According to Vybornov, the concentration of Meldonium found in the sample suggests that this amount was taken as a one-time dose, which has utterly no beneficial or useful effect whatsoever on the human body.

On Monday, news surfaced that the CAS anti-doping division had opened a case against Krushelnitsky. The date of the hearing is not clear at the moment. President of the Russian Curling Federation Dmitry Svishchev will attend the hearing.