Russian long jumper is among 136 applications IAAF has received from athletes seeking “exceptional eligibility” to compete in an individual capacity following continued suspension of RusAF as an IAAF Member
Russian long jumper Darya Klishina has been cleared to compete internationally as an independent neutral athlete, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has announced.
The IAAF Doping Review Board, which comprises Robert Hersh as chair, Sylvia Barlag and Antti Pihlakoski, is said to have “unanimously accepted” 25-year-old Klishina’s application which comes after the IAAF upheld the suspension of the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) as an IAAF Member at an IAAF Council meeting in Vienna on June 17.
The suspension means that athletes remain banned from competing for Russia in international events, however a rule amendment left an opportunity for Russians to apply to compete at the Rio Olympic Games and other international competitions as “neutral” athletes.
“The IAAF Doping Review Board has today agreed that Russian long jump athlete Darya Klishina meets the exceptional eligibility criteria to compete in International Competition as a neutral athlete under Competition Rule 22.1A,” read an IAAF statement in part.
Although the IAAF says 2014 European long jump bronze medallist Klishina is now eligible to compete internationally, it added that her participation is still subject to acceptance by the organiser of the competition in question.
“As soon as the formalities for Ms Klishina’s eligibility under IAAF Rules are confirmed, the IAAF will be writing to notify international events organisers of her eligibility,” continued the IAAF statement in part.
The IAAF states that its Doping Review Board has received a total of 136 applications from Russian athletes seeking “exceptional eligibility” to compete in an individual capacity under a separate provision in Competition Rule 22.1A(b), “namely on the basis that they are not tainted by RUSAF’s failure to put in place adequate anti-doping systems because they have been subject to other, fully adequate systems outside of the country for a sufficiently long period to provide a substantial assurance of integrity.”
Applications for the European Youth Championships, to be held in Tbilisi from July 14-17, were withdrawn so not reviewed, the IAAF said, adding that most of the other applications have now been reviewed.
Klishina, who won gold at the 2011 and 2013 editions of the European Indoor Championships and has a PB of 7.05m from 2011, trains in the US with coach Loren Seagrave.
In a Facebook post, Klishina wrote: “The news that I am allowed to participate in all international events and also 2016 Olympics in Rio came today late in the night. I am really happy.
“At this point I would like to thank IAAF for its expert decision and, of course, my very professional WME-IMG team, my agents Alexei Nikolaev and Olivier van Lindonk, and my sponsors Nike, Seiko and Skullcandy who supported me during all this time. And my special thanks goes to my outstanding coach and great person Loren Seagrave without whom my career simply would not be possible. Also, I appreciate every effort of IMG Academy and its staff to create the best possible, safe and clean environment for me.”
The IAAF has already also cleared Russian whistleblower Yuliya Stepanova to compete internationally as an independent neutral athlete. She contested the 800m at the European Championships in Amsterdam but struggled with injury.