Though testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug, Russian ice skater Kamila Valieva will be permitted to compete this week in the Winter Olympics in Beijing. The decision to allow her to carry on isn't going down well, but how many divisions has the Court of Arbitration for Sport?
The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) said it was "disappointed" by the ruling, saying it "appears that the Cas panel decided not to apply the terms of the Code, which does not allow for specific exceptions to be made in relation to mandatory provisional suspensions for 'protected persons', including minors." Valieva, who returned a positive test for angina-prevention drug trimetazidine on 25 December last year, had been provisionally suspended on 8 February but challenged the decision and the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (Rusada) lifted the ban the next day.
The best part: if she wins a medal, the medal ceremony will be canceled so the Olympics doesn't look bad.
Valieva is a child and a victim of the evil adults around her, so I could imagine allowing her to go out and perform and be scored, but having her competing is wild.
It's often said that the International Olympics Committee and all these associated organizations are among the world's most plainly corrupt, but this seems different. It's almost as if someone has a gun to their head. But it hardly matters. What's one more little rulebook on the fire, when the fire is about to get so much bigger anyway?
Correction: Valieva is an ice skater, not a gymnast.