Response from Russian coaches & athletes to the provisional suspension of ARAF, from EME News


Here are the reactions from Russian coaches and athletes to the provisional suspension of the All Russia Athletics Federation on Friday evening, November 13, 2015...



Yelena Isinbayeva (pole vault two-time Olympic champion and world record holder) posted in her Instagram "I'm shocked about decision taken by IAAF".

Yevgeniy Trofimov (coach of Yelena Isinbayeva): "My first reaction was a shock. This decision shows us once again an example of western democracy. Here it is the policy of double standards in the action. I told to Yelena and we decided to go and fight to the end. The truth is on our side. Justice must prevail. It is difficult to say something specific for now but such options (to compete in Rio under the IOC flag) exists. We know about that. It's very important to Yelena to perform in Rio to prove her innocence, to show that we're clean as well as all our sport. In any case, we'll compete during this time even if only at the local events. We need competition experience."

Sergey Shubenkov (reigning 110 m hurdles World champion): "I don't see reason to panic. I'm keeping calm so far. In any case, I was going to miss indoor season. That is provisional suspension, so, we will calmly watch over how things will develop."

Sergey Klevtsov (coach of Sergey Shubenkov): "Coaches and athletes should do their job, no matter what happened. Therefore, we continue to prepare for Rio Games. If our athletes cannot participate in the Olympics, it will be very sad. We continue to work but in the same time, we will be excited to wait for further moves."

Anastasiya Kapachinskaya (two-time 4x400m relay Olympic medallist): "I even didn't want to think about the option to perform in Rio under the IOC flag. I hope we will get permission to defend our own country and Russian flag. Nobody from our athletes will finish career only because of this decision. We all continue to train with positive thoughts."

Sergey Litvinov (hammer throw European bronze medallist 2014) in Facebook: "The IAAF punishes clean athletes. It is worse than if a clean athlete compete in Rio and lose against a cheater. A Russian clean athlete will not compete at all. I will not compete. This is a sad day for our sport."

Yevgeniy Zagorulko (coach of high jump Olympic champions Anna Chicherova and Andrey Silnov): "Maybe we will benefit from this situation, because we have to put things in order. Democracy is good, but discipline must be always. It looks like we lost control over some things. But I am sure that we will perform at Olympics. This situation would be a useful lesson for us."

Gennadiy Gabrilyan (coach of Mariya Kuchina): "I do not understand why all the athletes should suffer. Where are the principles of fair play? Why main contenders for Olympic medals, who never violated rules are not allowed to perform at the Games? There are still only questions without any answers."

Aleksandr Tsyplakov (coach of Yekaterina Koneva, Daniil Tsyplakov and Dmitriy Sorokin): "It is a shock and feeling of no hope. I have no doubt that it's political game. It was possible to punish ARAF but what is the athletes guilt? What is the reason of such a hard decision - to show Russia its place in the world of sports? Now is the right time for us to think how to avoid to become unemployed... How can I persuade my athletes to continue their careers? I have no words to describe my feelings."

Tatyana Lebedeva (long jump Olympic champion, ARAF vice-president): "Doping problem eradication is not a one-day question. All together, we have to create strategy and educational programs for athletes, coaches and doctors. IAAF has to help us, to share its experience but not put us in isolation when we have to solve this problem by ourselves only. We have clear recommendation from the IAAF to reform our federation and we'll do everything we have to do it as soon as possible. We're ready for any changes, breaking up, creation of new charter or constitution. We'll defend clean and innocent athletes even if in courts. All guilty persons will be punished."

Yekaterina Koneva (triple jump World indoor and European indoor champion) about possibility to compete in Rio under the IOC flag: "I was born in Russia and proud to represent my country at the major events. I'll never change Russian flag for any other."

Leave a comment

Wake up to RunBlogRun's news in your inbox. Sign up for our newsletter and we'll keep you informed about the Sport you love.

Subscribe to RunBlogRun's Global News Feed

* indicates required