Olympics - Evidence against Russians strong despite CAS blow: IOC

Olympics - Evidence against Russians strong despite CAS blow: IOC

The Court of Arbitration for Sport has dismissed appeals from 47 Russian athletes and coaches to participate in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, which begin tonight.

The Ad Hoc Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has ended hearings on appeals filed by 45 Russian athletes and two coaches against the decision of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) not to invite them for participation at the Winter Olympic Games and the decision is to be announced in 24 hours, said Philippe Bartsch, a lawyer for the Russian athletes.

"This Youth Olympic Games we hope can inspire one of the African countries to come up with a feasible candidature for 2032 or 2036", said Bach, speaking in Pyeongchang two days before the start of the Winter Olympics.

After the CAS decision, Russia's Olympic Committee requested that 13 active athletes and two who had become coaches should be allowed to participate in the February 9-25 Games but the IOC has refused to extend invitations to them.

The IOC has allowed some Russian hopefuls to compete neutrally as "Olympic athletes from Russia".

Russian officials and athletes have indicated that not all of those who have filed appeals plan to compete if they win.

They will wear a uniform with that name on it, and the Olympic anthem will be played at any medal ceremonies for Russian athletes.

All six were originally refused invitations to compete by the committee. The reasons that formed the basis of its decisions did not need to be shared with the athletes denied a place.

It noted that CAS had yet to provide a "full reasoning" for overturning the bans and that there was some evidence about the athletes that had not been available to the Oswald Commission, which conducted the investigation into Russian doping.

The Russians had appealed their exclusion from the Games by the International Olympic Committee over the doping scandal from the 2014 Sochi Games.

The IOC won't comment on individual cases, but said its invitation process was based on evidence from a newly obtained Moscow laboratory database detailing doping in previous years.