International governing body believes recent Tatyana Chernova and Yuliya Zaripova disciplinary cases further demonstrate the “robustness” of its anti-doping programme

The International Association of Athletics Federations has described its anti-doping programme as “robust” following the disciplinary cases involving Russian athletes Tatyana Chernova and Yuliya Zaripova.

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) on Friday announced a ban of two years for 2011 world heptathlon champion Chernova (pictured above) and London 2012 Olympic 3000m steeplechase gold medallist Zaripova.

Chernova tested positive following a re-analysis of her sample collected at the 2009 IAAF World Championships in Berlin which had been ordered by the IAAF, while Zaripova’s case was based upon irregularities in her Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) profile.

Confirmation of those two bans followed the news that Olympic gold medallist race walkers Sergey Kirdyapkin, Valery Borchin and Olga Kaniskina had also been handed suspensions by RUSADA after biological passport irregularities.

“The disciplinary cases concerning the anti-doping rule violations of Tatyana Chernova and Yuliya Zaripova, notified by RUSADA at the end of last week, are the latest illustration of the robustness of the IAAF anti-doping programme,” read an IAAF statement.

It continued: “More than 40 elite athletes have now been sanctioned on the basis of abnormal ABP profiles from the IAAF testing programme.”

The international governing body also reiterated that no specific comment will be made on the recent sanctions announced by RUSADA until the full decisions have been received in writing. IAAF would then have 45 days to appeal should it be deemed that they do not comply with IAAF anti-doping rules.

In January the IAAF described the number of Russian doping cases in athletics generally, and in race walking specifically, as a “major concern”.