News 14 March 2016

Sports Integrity Briefs – 14 Mar. 2016

• Russia’s Minister for Sport, Vitaly Mutko (pictured), has responded critically to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)’s decision on Friday not to readmit the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) to world athletics. According to Reuters, Mutko said that the IAAF’s criteria for readmission were unclear. ‘There are no criteria,’ Mutko reportedly said in an interview. ‘What should Russian athletics do? Dance on the table? Sing a song?’ Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, has now also weighed in on the matter saying that Russia’s readmission needs to be done on a “professional and fair level” without political interference. In an interview with Russian broadcaster REN TV, Lavrov said, “I believe that professional explanation must follow in response to professional questions.”

Anti-doping Switzerland has added its voice to those calling for Russia to be excluded from the 2016 Rio Olympics. “It is alarming and unacceptable that there should be no reliable control system in Russian sport in the run-up to the Summer Olympic Games in Rio”, said Dr. Matthias Kamber, director of Antidoping Switzerland in a media statement. “Under these circumstances, we owe it to our athletes – who are subjected to a comprehensive control and prevention system – to continue to demand that the Russian athletes be excluded from the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games”.

• The Racing Integrity Bill 2015 which was introduced to the state parliament of Queensland, Australia, in December 2015, has faced renewed scrutiny ahead of its reporting deadline. The Bill, which will set up a Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC), was introduced following the report of the Queensland Greyhound Racing Industry Commission of Inquiry. The Inquiry found in June last year that Queensland greyhound racing industry had ‘failed to ensure integrity in the industry and failed to safeguard animal welfare’, as reported by The Sports Integrity Initiative. The Chairman of one of the major racing clubs in the state, has reportedly said that the new proposed powers in the bill will mean that the Commission will be ‘open to abuse of powers’ and that it outlines a ‘catastrophic future’. According to the Gold Coast Bulletin, Queensland’s Racing Minister has said that the State Government makes ‘no apology for introducing laws designed to give Queensland the strongest racing integrity and animal welfare standards in the country.’

• The former Chief Executive of the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA), Henrietta Rushwaya, has responded to allegations that she was involved in a match-fixing ring by reportedly saying that she was working undercover for a FIFA investigation to expose the ring. According to the The Herald, Philip Chiyangwa, the ZIFA president has rejected Rushwaya’s story as she did not alert ZIFA or any other authority of the investigation. According to the Zimbabwe Daily, former national team coach Ian Gorowa has also reportedly denied the accusations.

The Kenyan athletes’ representative, Noah Ngeny has reportedly resigned from his position after telling Reuters that Athletics Kenya (AK) had ignored his advice to better educate athletes on doping.

• Bulgarian paralympic discus and shot-put champion, Stela Eneva, has tested positive for a prohibited substance, reports Novinite. It is understood that Eneva will now miss the Rio 2016 Paralympics.

• Italian Davis Cup player Marco Cecchinato is under investigation by his national tennis federation over suspicions of match-fixing during a tournament last October, reports AFP.

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