Thursday 29 September 2016

Paula Radcliffe says she won't be 'abused' into releasing blood test data

Published 10/09/2015 | 08:29

Paula Radcliffe
Paula Radcliffe

Paula Radcliffe says the pressure being put on her to release her blood test data is bordering on abuse.

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The marathon world record holder felt compelled to emphatically deny cheating during her career after becoming caught up in the doping allegations which have engulfed athletics.

The Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee were investigating allegations made by the Sunday Times and the German broadcaster ARD that hundreds of athletes had recorded suspicious blood test results which were not followed up by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) - claims denied by the world governing body - when chairman Jesse Norman appeared to implicate her.

Radcliffe, who was a vocal campaigner against drug cheats during her career, has admitted to fluctuations in her blood test scores, but said they were down to entirely innocent reasons and she had been cleared by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

There have been calls for the three-time London Marathon winner to release in full her data in the interests of transparency, but Radcliffe has been advised not to do so for fear of it being misinterpreted.

"That is going against the advice and the request of the governing bodies of our sport, of WADA," she said in an interview with BBC Breakfast.

When it was pointed out to her that it was her reputation on the line, she said: "I don't need to do that - I know that I'm clean.

"You're the one that has doubts and that, I'm afraid, when it all boils down to it, is not my problem, because I know that I have always competed as a clean athlete, I have always stood up for what I believe in.

"I couldn't look my children in the eye and teach them the same moral beliefs that I was brought up with, to stand up for what you believe in, to treat other people with respect, to treat other people fairly - no matter whether other people will treat you with respect, you still do that and you still stand up for what you believe in.

"I'm always doing that and so I am not being forced and pushed and almost abused into giving a knee-jerk reaction to something that goes against other people who I trust and who are asking me at this moment to put my trust in them and to stand with them to protect a lot of the other innocent athletes, because I do not want to see another innocent athlete be put through what I've been put through the last few months."

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