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World Athletics Approves 23 Russians to Compete as Neutral Before Tokyo Olympics

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World Athletics has announced 23 Russian athletes who can compete under a neutral flag before the Tokyo Olympics.

Once their national federation is removed from doping, Russians must apply for individual exemptions to receive “authorized neutral athlete” status after their drug testing records have been verified.

High jumper Mikhail Akimenko and athlete Vasily Mizinov – both silver medalists at the 2019 World Championships – were among the names on the list published on Saturday by the track’s governing body.

A total of 27 Russian athletes have so far been declared eligible to compete internationally in 2021 as neutral.

The other four include three-time world high jump champion Maria Lasickene and world high jump champion Angelika Sidorova.

However, no more than 10 Russian athletes will be eligible to compete in the Tokyo Olympics, according to rules approved by the World Athletics Council, when they recently revive an authorized neutral athlete or the ANA scheme.

So far, two applications for ANA status have been rejected by the World Athletics Doping Review Board. Saturday’s message did not identify them.

The Russian Federation of Tracks, known as RusAF, has been suspended since 2015 after investigations revealed that doping was rampant among elite Russian athletes.

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