News 6th November 2018

Sports Integrity Briefs – 6 November 2018

• Weightlifters from New Zealand have been warned that they could be suspended for two years if they attend training clinics run by British weightlifter Sonny Webster, reports InsideTheGames. UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) sanctioned Webster with a four year ban after he refused an offer to cut his ban in half if he admitted the offence, despite agreeing that the amount of ostarine in his sample was so low, it would have been almost impossible to establish the source.

• The International Boxing Association (AIBA) has elected Gafur Rahimov as its new President. In 2012, the US Department of the Treasury alleged that Rakhimov, an Uzbek Russian, was a member of the ‘Brothers’ Circle’ organised crime group. ‘As a key member of the Brothers’ Circle, Gafur Rakhimov acts for or on behalf of the Brothers’ Circle’, read a statement. ‘Rakhimov is one of the leaders of Uzbek organized crime with a specialty in the organized production of drugs in the countries of Central Asia. He has operated major international drug syndicates involving the trafficking of heroin.’ Earlier this week, the CAS upheld an appeal from Serik Konakbayev, another AIBA Vice President and President of the Asian Boxing Confederation, against a 1 October decision not to include his name on the list of candidates standing for election for the role of AIBA President.

• Former batsman Gulam Bodi has become the first South African to be criminally convicted of match-fixing, reports ESPN CricInfo. It is understood that Bodi is being charged under the Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act (PRECCA) of 2004, which makes match-fixing a crime in South Africa. Criminal charges were levied against Bodi in July this year, after he was sanctioned with a 20 year ban by Cricket South Africa in January 2016. He admitted to several charges of fixing matches during the 2015 Ram Slam Twenty20 tournament. Six other players – Alviro Petersen, Thami Tsolekile, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Jean Symes, Pumi Matshikwe and Ethy Mbhalati – were also sanctioned by CSA (media statements here, here, and here) for their involvement.

• The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has announced that Colombians Yeison Lopez and Andreas Mauricio Caicedo Piedrahita have been provisionally suspended after returning adverse analytical findings (AAFs) for boldenone. The anabolic androgenic steroid does occur naturally, however the IWF clarified that both AAFs indicated exogenous (non-natural) boldenone. 

• Sri Lankan bowling coach Nuwan Zoysa has been charged with three counts of breaching the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Anti-Corruption Code. The charges are as follows: ‘Article 2.1.1 – being party to an effort to fix or contrive or to otherwise influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or other aspect of an International match; Article 2.1.4 – directly soliciting, inducing, enticing or encouraging a player to breach Code Article 2.1.1; Article 2.4.4 – failing to disclose to the ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit full details of any approaches or invitations he received to engage in corrupt conduct under the Code’, the ICC announced.

Akere Muna, Chair of the Vetting Panel of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), has tendered his resignation. Muna has reportedly been sentenced to a three year jail term for concealment of procedure in a case involving his sister. Muna described the case as ‘politically motivated’ in an IAAF statement. He was appointed to Chair the IAAF Vetting Panel, which assesses the eligibility of new or existing officials being put forward for IAAF roles, in February 2017.

• The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has decided to lift all restrictions it placed on the International Biathlon Union (IBU) in June, following police raids on the IBU offices in April. “The trust put in the new IBU leadership by the IOC is an endorsement and a commitment for us at the same time”, said IBU President Olle Dahlin in a statement. “The lifting of all restrictions and re-instatement of payments shows that we are on the right path with our reform efforts and it commits us to follow this path”.

• The Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) has announced that a new Governance Support and Monitoring Unit (GSMU) is operational, and will help member international federations to implement better governance procedures by the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The GSMU will be headed by Francesco Ricci Bitti, President of the International Tennis Federation (ITF); an International Olympic Committee (IOC) Member; and a member of the Executive Committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

• The international equestrian federation (FEI) has announced that two horses have been provisionally suspended for two months after returning adverse analytical findings (AAFs) for prohibited substances. The horse Caipirina returned an AAF for Boldenone Undecylenate, Boldenone, and Ractopamine; and the horse Bardolina returned an AAF for O-Desmethylvenlafaxine (a metabolite of Venlafaxine). The athletes responsible for the horses have also been provisionally suspended until both cases are heard by a disciplinary tribunal.

Ireland and Canada have both announced their support for meaningful governance reforms of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). At last week’s WADA Media Symposium, WADA President Sir Craig Reedie and its Director General, Olivier Niggli, dismissed such calls for reform as misplaced. 

• The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has signed a partnership with the International Testing Agency (ITA), which will take responsibility for parts of its anti-doping programme. 

Rose Grissell has been appointed as the new Head of Diversity and Inclusion for British Racing, the British Horseracing Association (BHA) announced.

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