Swim Poll of the Week: 68% In Favor of Making Adjustments to Doping Suspensions That Will Leave Some Athletes Eligible For Tokyo

swim-poll

This is the Swim Poll of the Week for Wednesday April 22, 2020, sponsored by Strechcordz Swim Training Products. In our last poll, we wanted to know: Should there be adjustments made to doping suspensions that will now leave some athletes eligible for next year’s Olympic Games?

Athletes have voiced their opposition to those serving doping suspensions and excluded from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in July this year being eligible for a Games delayed until July next year due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

As the call for suspensions during the health crisis to be extended to take account of a sports-free season cause by the health crisis, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has hinted that there will be no adjustment of suspensions because of the health crisis if “natural justice” is to be served.

Sebastian Coe, head of World Athletics, believes that the issue needs further consideration, and will listen to what the independent Athletics Integrity Unit has to say. There is no such unit in swimming but the sport is among those with cases of athletes who would have missed Tokyo 2020 but may now be eligible for ‘Tokyo 2020 in 2021’.

The 2020 Olympics were officially postponed last month for one year. The opening ceremony is now set for July 23, 2021. That is where our swim poll question comes in.

Some are now suggesting that suspension periods should be extended by the length of the sports lockdown once sport opens shop when the World Health Organisation (WHO) and others deem it to be safe.

While that is likely to be challengeable in law, there are also other considerations to be had, including how close an athlete is to having served a full term of a suspension.

Among high-profile active suspensions in swimming, the following athletes could make it back to the sport in time to qualify for a July 2021 Olympic Games should they choose to do so, even though they were not eligible for Tokyo 2020:

Should there be adjustments made to doping suspensions that will now leave some athletes eligible for next year’s Olympic Games?

We asked for the swim poll and you answered with…

Here are the answers:

Yes, make adjustments – 68%

No, give them the opportunity for Tokyo – 33%

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