Russia banned from all major sport by WADA for four years

Luke Bradshaw
Sports Writer
Russian Anti-Doping Agency Director General Yuri Ganus (Credit: Getty Images)

Russia has been banned from all major sporting events for four years by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada).

Athletes will be allowed to compete if they can prove that they are untainted by the recent doping scandal, but will have to compete independently – the Russian flag and anthem will be not be allowed at major events.

The ban affects next year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, as well as the 2022 World Cup. The ban does not affect Euro 2020 (where St Petersburg is a host city), as UEFA is not defined as a 'major event organisation'.

Wada's executive committee made the unanimous decision in a meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland.

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Russia's Anti Doping Agency (Rusada) was required to hand over data to WADA as part of the investigation into manipulating lab data after the country was reinstated in 2018 following a previous three-year ban for doping offences.

Neutral athletes in PyeongChang Olympic Stadium. (Credit: Getty Images)

Rusada has now failed to do so and declared ‘non-compliant’ by WADA. It has 21 days to appeal the decision.

At the 2018 Winter Olympics, 168 Russian athletes competed under a neutral flag.

WADA President Sir Craig Reedie said: “The Executive Committee’s (ExCo) strong decision today shows WADA’s determination to act resolutely in the face of the Russian doping crisis, thanks to the Agency’s robust investigatory capability, the vision of the Compliance Review Committee (CRC), and WADA’s recently acquired ability to recommend meaningful sanctions via the Compliance Standard which entered into effect in April 2018. Combined, these strengths have enabled the ExCo to make the right decisions at the right time.

More to follow.


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