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Winter Olympics: Second Russian tests positive for banned substance

A second Olympic Athlete from Russia has tested positive for a banned substance at the Winter Olympics. Nadezha Sergeeva, who finished 12th in the two-woman bobsleigh, tested positive for a heart medication.The Russian bobsleigh federation on Friday confirmed that Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR) Nadezha Sergeeva had tested positive for a banned substance during the Pyeongchang Winter Games.

“A doping test by the pilot of the Russian team Nadezhda Sergeyeva on February 18 gave a positive result for a heart medicine that is on the banned list,” the federation said in a statement on its website, adding that a previous test on February 13 was negative. The statement did not say what substance had been detected, but Russia’s TASS news agency quoted a member of the OAR delegation in South Korea, who said it was trimetazidine.

This was the second positive test for an Olympic Athlete from Russia, after Alexander Krushelnitsky, who won bronze in mixed doubles curling, tested positive for the heart medication meldonium. He and his wife and teammate, Anastasia Bryzgalova, were subsequently stripped of their bronze medals, which were then awarded to the Norwegians, who had finished fourth in the event.

Under a neutral flag

A total of 168 Russian athletes were approved by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to compete in Pyeongchang under the OAR banner and a neutral flag. This came after the IOC suspended the Russian Olympic Committee late last year over evidence of state-sponsored doping, as outlined in a World Anti-Doping Agency-commissioned report.

The IOC has previously indicated that it could lift the suspension at the end of these Games, allowing the Russians to display their national flag at the closing ceremony. However, the IOC’s position on the matter could change in light of the two positive OAR doping tests. The IOC is to meet to discuss the matter on Saturday.

pfd/ (dpa, AFP)

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