Thomas Bach gets his Pound of flesh

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Is the International Olympic Committee’s President Thomas Bach surrounding himself with cheerleaders and removing those who speak plainly?

Canadian Dick Pound, who rarely minces words, has been critical of some of the IOC’s decisions to do with the Russian doping scandal.

Since Russia’s ban from systematic doping, the IOC, as well as the Russian Anti-doping Agency and the Russian government, have been slowly untangling the apparent Russian doping mess in a marketing coup d’etat of sorts. It is not working on Pound and it certainly doesn’t work on the international sporting community.

From Inside the Games

Richard Pound has been removed as chairman of the Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) Board for both its Spanish and Swiss operations, insidethegames can reveal.

The news has not yet been formally announced and it is not yet clear who will replace him.

It follows the veteran Canadian’s departure from the influential International Olympic Committee (IOC) legal affairs panel announced as part of updated Commission lists yesterday.

He has also been removed from his position as an ordinary Board member for the Spanish-arm of Olympic Channel Services (OCS).

The 76-year-old, the longest-serving current IOC member, remains on the IOC Marketing and Communications Commission, but these are considered less significant in the running of Olympic operations.

“These are all decisions taken by the President [Thomas Bach] who is entitled to take whatever decision he wants,” Pound told insidethegames.

Pound was appointed to the OBS position by Bach in 2014 after previously serving as head of the IOC’s Television Rights Negotiations Commission in the 1980s at a time of huge change in Olympic broadcasting.

His relations with the IOC leadership have worsened in recent months after his criticisms to the organisation’s response to the Russian doping scandal.

Neither the IOC nor OBS have yet confirmed his departure or who will replace him.

There appears a distinct possibility, however, the new OBS Board chair could be Gerardo Werthein, the Argentinian who has often led attacks on those who have criticised IOC decisions, including Pound, at recent meetings.

Werthein is one of only three members of the current Swiss-arm of the OBS Board who are not members of the IOC administration.

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