Russian curlers hand back Olympic medals amid doping probe
Tehran (KNA) - Two Russian curlers have given back their Winter Olympic bronze medals after one of them, Aleksandr Krushelnitckii, tested positive for the banned substance meldonium.
Krushelnitckii, and his wife, Anastasia Bryzgalova, voluntarily gave back the medals they won last weekduring the doubles curling event in Pyeongchang, Valentina Parinova, spokeswoman for the Russian Curling Federation, told broadcaster Russia-1.
Krushelnitckii had filed a case with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) after an initial positive doping test, but dropped it Thursday after failing a second test.
He said while he had not knowingly violated doping rules, it was pointless to contest the results.
"I have never either violated the rules of sports or used doping," Krushelnitckii said in a statement published by Russian state news agency TASS.
"We won a bronze medal by hard work and constant training. On my part, I admit that there has been a formal violation of the current anti-doping rules."
Krushelnitckii said it "would be stupid to deny it after two tests proved positive," adding "the samples tested had been collected during the Olympic Games and I am ready to face the verdict that is usually announced in such cases.
"Having weighed up the pros and cons, I decided to withdraw my case from CAS. I believe that a hearing would be useless under the current rules," he said.
In a statement released by CAS, it officially ruled that Krushelnitckii had tested positive for meldonium and that he had been retroactively disqualified from competition at this year's Winter Olympics, reversing the team's Bronze medal result.