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Can the country of Bahrain afford more athlete-refugees onto their national athletics team?
World Athletics, previously known as the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and their Doping Review Board has approved applications of 37 Russian track and field athletes to compete in international competition.
They are allowed to compete as independents. They might as well have handed them over to Bahrain and made some money from the deal.
Among the athletes re-instated are triple jumper Vladislav Aleksandrin, long jumper Natalya Spiridonova, pole vault athletes Dmitriy Kachanov and Ilya Dolbin.
There were 26 more athletes approved for the European Athletics Under-20 Championships.
“The participation of all these athletes as neutral athletes in international competition is still subject to formalities for eligibility under IAAF Rules being completed and subject to acceptance of their entries by individual meeting organisers,” states the IAAF via press release.
Bahrain doesn’t have competitive field events athletes, do they? Certainly, they could use a further seven juniors that were approved for the junior Euro competition.
Nearly 120 Russian athletes have been given approval to compete, while only 40 applications have been rejected. Applying for reinstatement is rich coming from a nation that provided systematic doping to its athletes.
They never learn, for example in May a “re-instated” athlete Igor Obraztsov failed an out-of-competition test.
Or perhaps Turkey is seeking candidates for their leftover supply of Stanazolol, an anabolic steroid that at least 35 Turkish athletes were caught testing positive for a few years ago.