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Liliya Shobukhova handed two-year doping ban

Liliya Shobukhova handed two-year doping ban

Russian marathoner set to be stripped of World Marathon Majors titles, with results from October 2009 to be annulled

Liliya Shobukhova has been handed a two-year ban for doping, with her results from October 9, 2009, to be annulled.

This means she is set to lose her 2010 London Marathon title, as well as Chicago Marathon titles from 2009, 2010 and 2011, with her ban backdated to January 24, 2013. It will run until January 23, 2015.

The ban was announced by the Russian Athletics Federation on Tuesday, following abnormalities detected in her biological passport.

If the ban is confirmed following any appeal, her two World Marathon Major (WMM) series wins of 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 would also be annulled. The WMM series comprises the Tokyo, Boston, Virgin Money London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago and TCS New York City marathons.

Shobukhova had moved to second on the world all-time marathon list behind Britain’s Paula Radcliffe in 2011 following her 2:18:20 in Chicago, a result that is also set to be wiped.

“Lilya Shobukhova finally exposed as a drug cheat,” tweeted world record-holder Radcliffe following news of the 36-year-old’s ban.

“WMMajors: action needs to be taken to show cheating not acceptable. Monies won should be returned and rightful winners recognised,” she added. “Fraud on so many levels, so much money effectively stolen in appearance fees, winnings and endorsements.”

In a statement, World Marathon Majors confirmed that any athlete found guilty of a doping offence is required to repay any prize or appearance money earned at WMM events including WMM series prize money.

“WMM will continue to hold a stern line and supports all measures to ensure the integrity of the athletes competing in their races,” commented Nick Bitel of the World Marathon Majors general counsel. “Cheats need to understand that they are not welcome in our sport and that they will be caught.”

Prior to her move up to the marathon, Shobukhova won world indoor 3000m silver in Moscow in 2006, as well as 5000m silver at the European Championships in Gothenburg that same year.

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