FILE PHOTO: A general view of Olympic rings following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in front of the Japan Olympics Museum in Tokyo, Japan March 24, 2020. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo
Thai and Malaysian lifters will be absent from the Tokyo Olympics after the International Weightlifting Federation said on Saturday it had suspended the two countries’ riders after a large number of doping cases.
The International Weightlifting Federation said in a statement that the quartet of the two countries will not participate in the Tokyo Olympics, regardless of changing the date.
The Olympic Games were postponed for a year due to the outbreak of the coronavirus, and it is now expected to be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021, but the federation of Thailand and Malaysia can appeal the decision of the International Federation to the Sports Arbitration Court within 21 days.
The International Federation also imposed a fine of 200 thousand dollars on the Thai Federation, which has already volunteered and suspended its participation in all weightlifting activities, including the Tokyo Olympics, because of its record of doping in the recent period.
Eight Thai lifters, including an Olympic champion, fell short on doping tests at the World Championships last year.
The International Federation reached these four lifters after they conducted additional tests in Cologne, Germany, on samples taken last November from “targeted athletes” in the World Championship in Turkmenistan.
Thailand was at the heart of a doping scandal in 2011, when seven quadruples were punished with suspension after they fell short of mathematically banned substances, including two in the six new cases.
The International Federation suspended the membership of the Thai Weightlifting Federation for a period of three years and said that it would review the punishment on or after 7 March 2022 if the Thai Federation confirmed its adherence to the standards previously set.
Last January, all members of the Thai Board of Directors resigned after less than a month to allegations in a German TV documentary about the use of four-wheelers of stimulants.
I punished the Malaysian Federation with a one-year suspension. The International Federation said it would review the punishment and possibly raise it in early October 2020.