Doping in International Sports: Russia Banned From 2020 Olympics

The official logo of the 2020 Olympics. Photo courtesy of olympic.org

The official logo of the 2020 Olympics. Photo courtesy of olympic.org

Ashley Ciesluk, Staff Writer

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        At the beginning of December of 2019, Russia was voted to be banned from all international sports for four years by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). Two major international sports events included in those four years would be the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo as well as the 2022 soccer World Cup in Qatar. 

        Doping in sports has become more and more of a problem as the years have gone by. This being the most recent incident. Causing 43 Olympic medals to be taken back from Russian athletes. 

        Doping is the use of drugs on an athlete to enhance athletic abilities. WADA was established in 1999 as an international independent agency funded and composed of the sports movement and government.

        This is not the first time Russia faced this problem though. In 2008, seven track and field runners were suspended from the upcoming Olympics because of manipulations with urine samples, in order to hide the fact of their doping.

        In 2016 Russia submitted 389 athletes to compete in the Olympics, but 111 were removed by the IOC (International Olympic Committee) because of doping incidents, leaving only 278 athletes cleared.

        December 5, 2017, the IOC stated that the Russian Olympic Committee was in fact suspended from the 2018 Olympics, but allowed all competitors with no history or background of drug violations to compete as an “ Olympic Athlete from Russia.” under certain terms. 

        Senior Gabriel Gardino said, “ I think it’s fair that they banned Russia from the Olympic because doping makes the playing field unfair and gives them a better advantage, so removing them teaches them a lesson and evens out the competition making it fair for all.”

        Senior Aaron Scofield said, “ I think it would be fair to the other competitors that Russia was banned because it makes the competition more even because doping is cheating.”

        In the end, Russia was banned for their actions but still is allowed to have some competitors with a clean background to be entered for the competitions, still giving them the opportunity to compete to show their skills to the world.