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CAS rejects IBA’s appeal in new decision

- Reuters Lausanne

The Internatio­nal Boxing Associatio­n (IBA)’s appeal against a decision to withdraw recognitio­n of it being the sport’s internatio­nal federation was dismissed yesterday by global sport’s top court.

The Internatio­nal Olympic Committee (IOC) in June decided to strip the IBA of recognitio­n over its failure to complete reforms on governance, finance and ethical issues.

“The IOC Session took its decision based on the recommenda­tion issued by the IOC Executive Board on 7 June 2023 following a long process, initiated shortly after the Olympic Games Rio 2016,” the Court of Arbitratio­n for Sport (CAS) said in a statement.

“During (the process) the IOC requested the IBA to undertake various measures to address serious concerns related to its governance and financial stability,” the statement added.

It added that the IBA had not complied with the conditions set down by the IOC.

“The IBA had not increased its financial transparen­cy and sustainabi­lity including through diversific­ation of revenues (nor) changed its process relating to referees and judges to ensure its integrity,” CAS said.

The sports court added that the IBA had not implemente­d all the measures proposed by the “Governance Reform Group” establishe­d by the IOC, including a change of culture.

“The Panel determined that these three elements justified the IOC Session’s decision to withdraw recognitio­n of the IBA,” the statement added.

“(It also) emphasised that the IOC’s right to control the circumstan­ces in and the conditions on which it confers recognitio­n outweighed the IBA’s personalit­y rights.”

Rival body World Boxing said last month it will seek recognitio­n from Olympic organisers to replace the IBA and keep the troubled sport on the programme for the 2028 Los Angeles Games.

Russia accuses IOC chief of ‘conspiracy’ to exclude its athletes

Russia accused Internatio­nal Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach yesterday of taking part in a “conspiracy” with Ukraine to exclude its strongest athletes from this year’s Paris Games.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoma­n Maria Zakharova made the allegation after two Russian pranksters known as Vovan and Lexus published a recording of a conversati­on with Bach in which he was falsely led to believe he was speaking to an African sports official.

Bach said in the call that the IOC had establishe­d a special panel to monitor the media and the internet and ensure that Russian athletes who had made political statements in support of their government could not take part in the Olympics.

“We have also offered to the Ukrainian side - not only offered, but asked them to provide us with their knowledge of the behaviour of such (Russian) athletes or officials,” Bach could be heard saying in English on the recording. Zakharova posted on Telegram that Bach had “entered into a political-administra­tive and, apparently, criminal conspiracy with one specific party” - meaning Ukraine - “to exclude strong sports competitor­s from internatio­nal competitio­ns”.

She added: “The relationsh­ip of IOC President Bach with the National Olympic Committee of Ukraine and its officials, and the admissions of a ‘request to monitor Russian athletes’ should be the subject of a thorough investigat­ion.”

Relations between Russia and the IOC have worsened sharply in the run-up to the Olympics, at which Russian and Belarusian athletes will compete as neutrals, without their flags and anthems, because of the war in Ukraine.

They have also been banned from taking part in the opening parade.

Pre-empting the publicatio­n of the prank call, the IOC said last month that Bach had been the victim of a hoax.

The IOC has publicly announced the establishm­ent of a review panel to evaluate the eligibilit­y of every Russian or Belarusian athlete who qualifies for Paris.

In order to be cleared to compete, athletes must not have actively supported the war in Ukraine and must not be contracted to any military or security agency.

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