Narsingh handed four-year ban

Narsingh handed four-year ban

Narsingh handed four-year ban

The final word in the Narsingh Yadav doping saga has been uttered, and it isn’t in favour of the Indian wrestler.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Thursday imposed a four-year ban on Narsingh, upholding the appeal by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) against the clearance handed to the wrestler by the National Anti-Doping Agency’s (NADA) hearing panel. The ban period began on Thursday, ruling him out of the Games.

Narsingh was to begin his campaign in the 74kg category on Friday. His name was included in the draw after weighing in on Thursday, in the hope that he would be cleared by the CAS. But the verdict, after a hearing at the CAS ad hoc panel here on Thursday, went the other way.

Now, Narsingh’s place will go vacant and India won’t have a competitor in the category, thanks to the decisions that were rushed through back home in an attempt to get him included in the competition.

The Wrestling Federation of India had put Parveen Rana as a replacement in case the NADA panel didn’t clear Narsingh. But with the wrestler getting clearance from the panel at the last moment, Rana was given the go-by.

Narsingh had alleged sabotage after he came positive for methandienone in a test conducted on June 25 and July 5. The panel agreed with the wrestler and cleared him of the charges, but WADA then exercised its right to appeal, taking the matter to the ad hoc panel based here for the Olympic Games.

“The athlete asserted that he was a victim of sabotage. WADA requested that a four-year ban be imposed on the athlete,” a CAS statement said. After the hearing process, “the parties were informed that the (WADA) application was upheld, that Narsingh Yadav was sanctioned with a four-year ineligibility period starting today,” the statement said.

The CAS did not accept Narsingh’s argument that he was the victim of sabotage. It noted that there was no evidence that he didn’t have any fault or that the anti-doping rule violation was unintentional. All results obtained by Narsingh from and including June 25 will be disqualified with all resulting consequences (including forfeiture of medals, points and prizes), the CAS said.

Narsingh won the Olympic quota place for India by claiming the bronze at the World Championships last year. But his Olympics selection was challenged in court by fellow 74kg wrestler Sushil Kumar who wanted a trial to decide on the Indian participant. The appeal was rejected by the court and everything was going swimmingly for the wrestler when the news of his positive dope test broke out.

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