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Kremlin hopes investigation will help curler Krushelnitsky exonerate himself

Earlier, Alexander Krushelnitsky tested positive for meldonium
Alexander Krushelnitsky Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS
Alexander Krushelnitsky
© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, February 21. /TASS/. The Kremlin hopes that the investigation of Russia’s curler Alexander Krushelnitsky, who tested positive for the substance meldonium Olympic athletes are prohibited from using, will help the athlete to exonerate himself, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the media.

"The only thing that can help our athlete is the investigation that will be held, including the probe in compliance with our effective anti-doping legislation," he said. "Let us hope the probe will promote his exoneration."

Peskov acknowledged that "for now this is a hard fact [the presence of meldonium in the athlete’s test samples]."

"But let us stay hopeful," he said.

Krushelnitsky and Anastasia Bryzgalova won the bronze in mixed doubles. On Tuesday, it was announced that Krushelnitsky’s sample B tested positive for meldonium. The anti-doping division of the of the Court of Arbitration for Sports on February 19 opened a case against Krushelnitsky over the abuse of anti-doping rules.

Russia’s Curling Federation has addressed Russia’s Investigative Committee with a message saying unidentified persons might have added the banned substance to the athlete’s meals. The Federation also requested videos from the CCTV cameras in South Korea and Japan, where Russian curlers had been getting ready for the Olympics. Besides, the Federation plans to ask the International Olympic Committee, the Organizing Committee of the 2018 Olympics and the World Curling Federation to help it investigate the incident.