Russian high jumper Anna Chicherova, the London 2012 Olympic champion, has been stripped of her bronze medal from the Beijing 2008 after her doping samples were retested and came back positive for anabolic steroids.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced today that Chicherova, 34 year, tested positive for turinabol and has been retroactively disqualified from Beijing 2008.
The IOC added that the Russian Olympic Committee should secure the return of her bronze medal “as soon as possible” from the woman who shared with Usain Bolt the distinction of having won an individual medal at the last five International Association of Athletics Federations’ (IAAF) World Championships and two Olympic Games.
Another Russian – Yelena Slesarenko – finished fourth in the high jump at Beijing 2008 and now stands to move up to the bronze position.
Russia’s former Olympic high jump champion Anna Chicherova has forfeited her Beijing 2008 bronze medal following an IOC retest of her sample from those Olympics ©Getty Images
It is IOC policy to store doping samples for 10 years to allow for them to be reanalysed when improved methods become available.
The IOC has recorded 98 positive cases in recent re-tests of more than 1,000 samples from Beijing 2008 and London 2012.
Chicherova, provisionally banned by the IAAF in July following the positive doping re-test of her Beijing 2008 sample, was not among the 68 athletes for whom Russian officials mounted an appeal in an attempt to get them reinstated for Rio 2016.
It was announced on May 24 that Chicherova was one of a number of Russian athletes among the 31 who had tested positive in re-tests of 454 Beijing 2008 Olympic samples undertaken by the IOC.
Russian news agency TASS named nine 2008 Olympic medallists among 14 Russian athletes involved.
“Perhaps it’s just a mistake,” Chicherova said, according to an Associated Press translation of a Russian television report.
“I can’t explain how my doping test gave a positive result.”
“I’ve competed a lot since then and given hundreds of samples.”