Almost half of the independent anti-doping experts at swimming’s world governing body have resigned amid claims their advice on how to deal with the Russian doping crisis was ignored before the Rio Olympics.
Professor Andrew Pipe, who chaired FINA’s doping control review board (DCRB), and two other members of the eight-strong panel wrote to the governing body’s president Dr Julio Maglione on Thursday.
In the letter the three say the review board had unanimously agreed a process to assess each Russian swimmer’s Rio eligibility, as FINA and the International Olympic Committee had requested in response to an explosive World Anti-Doping Agency-commissioned investigation into state-sponsored doping in Russia.
“Despite the anti-doping expertise of the individuals who make up the DCRB, FINA chose to ignore our advice,” the resignation letter said.
“We learned of FINA’s decisions regarding the eligibility of Russian competitors only by observing the Olympic competition.
“We were disappointed to note that our recommendations were not followed – and even more disappointed to receive no specific response to a subsequent written request for information regarding the reasons for FINA’s decision.”