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Olympics: Sports tribunal keeps Rio Games ban for Russia athletes

by Agnès Pedrero in Lausanne and Ben Simon in Geneva Lausanne, Switzerland -- The international sports tribunal on Thursday rejected an appeal by 67 Russian athletes seeking to overturn an IAAF doping ban on them competing at the Rio Olympics. The ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is seen as a key indicator as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) debates whether to order a blanket ban on Russia over accusations of state-run doping. The IOC said it will study the CAS decision before a conference call on Sunday with its executive board. A decision on banning Russia from the Rio Games which start on August 5 could come this weekend, an IOC spokesperson said. CAS said it had "dismissed" an appeal by the Russian Olympic Committee and 67 athletes against the suspension ordered by …

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IOC to explore ‘legal options’ regarding possible total ban on Russian teams from Rio Olympics

LAUSANNE, Switzerland — The IOC has explored 'legal options' regarding a possible total ban on Russian teams from the Rio Olympics. The IOC has also opened disciplinary action against Russian sports ministry officials implicated in the doping issue.

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Remembering Nelson Mandela

Sport has the power to inspire and unite people. As a pivotal figure in the success of international football, especially in his home state , the world celebrates the natal anniversary of former South African president Nelson Rolihlala Mandela. The FIFA World Cup, in its Twitter account, shared a post on #MandelaDay.   "Sport has the power to inspire and unite people."#MandelaDay pic.twitter.com/RFO9mshkz8 — FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) July 18, 2016  

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Olympics: Ban all Russians from Rio – WADA

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) called for Russia to be banned from the Rio Olympics on Monday and urged global sports governing bodies to bar Russia until "culture change" is achieved. The move comes after the release of a WADA-requested report by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren that says Russia used a complex state-supported doping scheme at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. "WADA calls on sport movements to deny Russian athletes participation at international competitions including Rio until 'culture change' is achieved," WADA spokesman Ben Nichols tweeted. "WADA: doping scheme across 30 sports mean there can no longer be presumption of innocence. The Russian doping control system is called into question." McLaren found that Russia's secret service and top sports ministry officials -- as well as those responsible for preparing Russian athletes -- made some …

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Kobe Paras to play for Creighton Bluejays after UCLA exit

Kobe Paras refused to bid goodbye to his dream of playing in the US collegiate basketball  after his controversial withdrawal from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Bruins late June. The Filipino baller committed to play for Creighton University’s Bluejays, a school based in Omaha, Nebraska. “I would gladly want to announce that I am taking my talents to Omaha Nebraska. #17000Strong,” Paras said on Twitter. Netizens welcomed Paras’ decision to play for the Bluejays, congratulating and showing their support to the Filipino pride. A certain Migz Mojica commented, “It’s UCLA’s loss, not yours. Goodluck.” Veteran Filipino sports analyst Ronnie Nathanielsz also showed his support to the young Paras on Twitter. “Benjie Paras informed me moments ago that Kobe has decided to play for Creighton University in Omaha… God bless him and his career.”       …

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Sharapova out of Rio as CAS delays doping decision

Lausanne, Switzerland -- The Court of Arbitration for Sport said Monday it has put back its ruling on the two-year doping ban for Maria Sharapova for two months to September, ruling the tennis superstar out of the Rio Olympics. The 29-year-old Russian, one of the biggest names in tennis, tested positive for the banned medication meldonium during January's Australian Open, in a severe blow to her reputation. If the ban -- which Sharapova has called "unfairly harsh" -- is upheld it would almost certainly end one of sport's most celebrated and high-profile careers. "Maria Sharapova and the International Tennis Federation (ITF) have agreed to defer the CAS decision until September 2016," said a CAS statement. "Due to the parties requiring additional time to complete and respond to their respective evidentiary submissions, and several scheduling conflicts, the …

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Cycling: Two-time champion Contador quits Tour de France

Two-time champion Alberto Contador sensationally quit the Tour de France on Sunday after injuries and illness left him trailing 20th overall going into the ninth stage. The Spaniard, 33, gave up the game 100 kilometres from the end of Sunday's stage, having struggled with injury since a crash on the opening stage. His Tinkoff team tweeted he also had a fever. He went into the stage more than three minutes behind overall leader Chris Froome.

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Jail looms as Pistorius to be sentenced for murder

Disgraced Paralympian Oscar Pistorius could return to jail on Wednesday, when a judge is set to sentence him for murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp three years ago. Pistorius was freed from prison in the South African capital Pretoria last October after serving one year of a five-year term for culpable homicide -- the equivalent of manslaughter. But an appeals court upgraded the conviction to murder, which has a minimum standard sentence of 15 years. Due to his time already spent in jail and mitigating factors such as his disability, he may be given a lesser term. Pistorius, 29, shot Steenkamp to death in the early hours of Valentine's Day in 2013, claiming he mistook her for a burglar when he fired four times through the door of his bedroom toilet. Judge Thokozile Masipa, who heard the original …

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Australia’s Cate Campbell breaks 100 freestyle world record

BRISBANE, Australia — Australian swimmer Cate Campbell broke the 100-meter freestyle world record at the Brisbane Grand Prix on Saturday. Achieved during Campbell's final competition before the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, the former world champion clocked 52.06 seconds, eclipsing German Britta Steffen's previous mark of 52.07 at the 2009 world championships. "It happened when I least expected it ... people have been asking me when am I going to break a world record for the last three years. Now they will stop asking me the question," Campbell said. It was the first individual world record by an Australian swimmer since the controversial 2008-09 now-banned "supersuit" period. Campbell took the No. 1 world ranking in the 100 with her 52.38 at the Australian trials in April. She said she would trade the record for a gold medal at Rio. "Anyone …

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Russia opens criminal case against former anti-doping chief

By Maria Kiselyova, Reuters MOSCOW - Russian federal investigators said on Saturday they had opened a criminal case against the country's former anti-doping chief on charges of abuse of office, a day after world athletics' governing body upheld a ban on Russia for systematic doping.   Grigory Rodchenkov, the former Moscow anti-doping laboratory chief who later fled to the United States, has spoken widely about how Russia ran a cover-up of doping by dozens of its athletes at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. The country's investigative committee, which is responsible for conducting investigations into local authorities and federal governmental bodies, said Rodchenkov ordered his subordinates in 2014 to recycle samples despite pledging to store them until further notice by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which resulted in damaging state interests. Investigators said they believed …

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