Court of Arbitration for Sport should decide on doping bans

Matthieu Reeb

Matthieu Reeb is the general secretary of Court of Arbitration for Sport

The Court of Arbitration for Sport should decide doping bans, according to a plan backed by the International Olympic Committee.

Individual sports federations currently rule on punishments for their athletes.

IOC president Thomas Bach has previously said that the move would increase transparency and consistency to combat cheating.

The IOC also recommended that the World Anti-Doping Agency has more power over the national testing bodies.

The plans were agreed at an IOC summit in Lausanne on Saturday focusing on the fight against doping. Wada will have the final say on whether to implement the proposals when it meets in November.

In the wake of the Fancy Bears hack – which revealed details of athletes’ therapeutic use exemptions for banned substances – Wada have also been asked to “significantly improve its information security standards”.

The proposals come after an independently commissioned Wada report alleged in July that Russia operated a four-year state-run doping programme across the vast majority of 28 Olympic sports.

Although Wada recommended a blanket ban for the whole of the Russian team for the 2016 Rio Games, the IOC opted to delegate the decision to individual sports federations.

This meant that Russians in certain sports were barred while their team-mates in others were free to compete.

However the IOC has now called upon Wada to lead a “more robust, more efficient, more transparent and more harmonised” anti-doping system.

Wada president Craig Reedie said his organisation is set to get “substantial additional powers”, adding that it should be ready to dictate when and where athletes are tested by national anti-doping bodies in time for the 2018 Winter Olympics.

“I am very satisfied, there was unanimity on the wish to strengthen Wada. It was a good peaceful meeting with helpful suggestions,” he added.

The IOC vowed to help Wada increase its annual budget of £21.7m if it made changes in line with its recommendations.

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