Russia's Olympic membership 'fully restored' as head of Russian Olympic Committee praises 'important' step

Russia was banned from February's Winter Olympics over a state-sponsored doping programme

Wednesday 28 February 2018 13:34
The Russian flag was not allowed to be carried during the closing ceremony
The Russian flag was not allowed to be carried during the closing ceremony

Russia has been "fully restored" by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), according to the president of the Russian Olympic Committee, having served a suspension over state-sponsored doping.

A team of 168 Russians competed as part of a neutral 'Olympic athletes from Russia' team in Pyeongchang in February, but before Sunday's closing ceremony the IOC had confirmed that the ban would be lifted so long as there were no more anti-doping violations. Two OAR athletes failed drugs tests during the games and all 168 OAR competitors had been required to prove they were clean before being cleared to participate.

ROC president Alexander Zhukov welcomed the IOC's "important" decision.

"The Russian Olympic Committee has had its rights fully restored," he said on state TV on Wednesday, but the IOC is yet to officially announce the news.

The OAR team was one of the larget in Pyeongchang and won 17 medals including two golds, though they were stripped of one when r Alexander Krushelnitsky was stripped of a bronze in the curling after testing positive for Meldonium. Nadezhda Sergeeva also tested positive for a "banned heart drug."

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