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1ST LEAD World champ Efimova to swim in Rio, IOC accepts defeat on past bans By John Bagratuni and Derek Wilson, dpa

Europe
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Rio de Janeiro (dpa) - Swimming world champion Yulia Efimova is to compete in the Olympic Games, Russian state news agency TASS reported Friday, as the International Olympic Committee are unable to ban athletes based on previous doping sanctions.

TASS quoted Russian Olympic delegation chief Igor Kazikov as saying: "We‘ve received a letter from the IOC (International Olympic Committee) where it confirms Yulia can take part in the Games."

As part of the allegations of widespread and state-controlled doping in Russia made in a report by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) investigator Richard McLaren, the IOC outlawed Russians with a doping past competing in Rio.

However, the Court of Arbitration for Sport on Thursday said the IOC‘s bid to exclude athletes based on previous sanctions "is unenforceable as it does not respect the athletes‘ right of natural justice."

Efimova, a four-time world champion, is the reigning 100-metre breaststroke title holder but was initially banned from competing in Rio due to a previous 16-month doping ban from 2014.

And now she is heading to Rio as a strong contender in the 100m in what is likely to be a grudge race with 2012 Olympic champion Ruta Meilutyte of Lithuania, American Lilly King and Jamaican Aila Atkinson.

Earlier Friday the IOC said it was frustrated by the latest ruling from CAS.

"We are naturally disappointed that the Court of Arbitration for Sport considered our measures against doped athletes too tough. We of course accept their judgement," a brief statement said.

TASS also reported CAS turned down appeals against Olympic bans for Russian cyclists Kirill Svechnikov, Dmitri Sokolov and Dmitri Strakhov.

At the same time, the arbitration body ruled against an IOC ban for Russian cyclists Ilnur Zakarin, Olga Zabelinskaya and Sergei Shilov.

However, Zakarin will not compete in Rio after all because of a lack of training, Tass reported.

Sailor Pavel Sozykin was also cleared to start in Rio.

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