Monday 26 September 2016

Rob Heffernan's wait for Olympic medal further delayed by courts

Cathal Dennehy

Published 26/02/2016 | 21:22

Rob Heffernan (SPORTSFILE)
Rob Heffernan (SPORTSFILE)

Rob Heffernan’s long wait for an Olympic medal looks set to continue after the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) said that it would not release its decision on the case involving Russian race walk Sergey Kirdyapkin for several days.

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Kirdyapkin, who won gold in 50km race walk at the 2012 Olympics – a race in which Heffernan finished fourth – was one of several Russians involved in a CAS hearing in November against the IAAF, who appealed the selective nature of their doping bans.

Today in Lausanne, CAS heard the case of the final accused Russian, Yulia Zaripova, and many were expecting a decision on Kirdyapkin’s case to also be released.

However, a spokesman for CAS has confirmed that the decision will not be released for several days as the Panel of Arbitrators now consider the arguments.

“The panel will deliberate and write an Arbitral Award which contains the decision and reasoning behind it,” said Katy Hogg, Communications Officer for CAS. “The exact time frame for such release is unknown, but it’s very unlikely to be this week.”

It is widely expected that the result of the case will see Heffernan upgraded to an Olympic bronze medal. Meanwhile both Kirdyapkin and Olga Kaniskina, the former Olympic champion in the 20km race walk, are reportedly preparing to return to competition at the Russian race-walking championships in Sochi this weekend, having reached the end of their three-year doping bans.

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