Russian long jumper Kotova suspended for doping

Updated 08 February 2013
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Russian long jumper Kotova suspended for doping

MOSCOW: Russian long jumper Tatyana Kotova has been provisionally suspended after failing a drugs test at the Helsinki 2005 world championships, the Russian anti-doping agency (RUSADA) said on Friday.
“The athletics world governing body IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) has started the investigation after being informed by the anti-doping laboratory in Lausanne that Kotova tested positive for a prohibitive substance at the 2005 world championships in Helsinki,” RUSADA said on its website (www.rusada.ru).
“In January 2013, the IAAF handed this case to RUSADA.” Kotova, 36, won a third consecutive world silver medal in Helinski and also won Olympic bronze medals in the 2000 Sydney Games and again in Athens four years later.
She did not qualify for the Russian Olympic team for laat year’s London Olympics after finishing sixth at the national championships.
Kotova’s case has been the latest in a series of recent doping offenses by Russian athletes.
European indoor 3,000 meters silver medalist Olesya Syreva was banned for two years last week for infringing anti-doping regulations.
In December, 2012 Olympic discus silver medalist Darya Pishchalnikova and Russian hammer champion Kirill Ikonnikov, who finished fifth at the London Games, were temporarily suspended while Olympic 2004 hammer champion Olga Kuzenkova was placed under investigation by the IAAF for failing drugs tests.
Also in December, the IAAF stripped shot putter Svetlana Krivelyova of her bronze medal from the 2004 Athens Games.
Krivelyova, 43 and long retired from the sport, tested positive for anabolic steroids after her samples from eight years ago were re-tested.


'We want to make Saudi Arabia proud': Pizzi promises better showing against Egypt

Updated 21 June 2018
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'We want to make Saudi Arabia proud': Pizzi promises better showing against Egypt

  • Saudi Arabia cannot progress from Group A even if they defeat Egypt in their final game on Monday
  • Wednesday’s overall performance was much improved, yet a lack of penetrative passing was obvious

ROSTOV-ON-DON: “Keeping possession of the ball seems to be the absolute and most important thing, but then when you sometimes find issues in getting the ball into your opponent’s half, you have to find other movements and ways of doing that,” said Oscar Tabarez after watching his lackluster Uruguay rely on a solitary Luis Suarez goal to eliminate Saudi Arabia from the World Cup. 
Tabarez was talking about his own team’s struggles, yet the assessment is considerably more applicable to the Green Falcons, who dominated possession and retained the ball with ease in midfield, yet for the second match running looked absolutely bereft of ideas in the final third. With Uruguay and Russia now on six points, Saudi Arabia cannot progress from Group A even if they defeat Egypt in their final game on Monday.
The Green Falcons coach Juan Antonio Pizzi confirmed he intends to stay at the helm of the side for the long-haul, yet is only too aware that the potential of this team is being hamstrung by its inability to score. He called it “our weakness”, adding that his side enjoyed “good ball possession, but no effectiveness”. They, he said, did not have the sufficient “weapons or tools” to equalize.
Pizzi’s side have found the net now just twice in their past five games and against Uruguay managed only three shots on target in 90 minutes — two of which came in added time and were so tame they would hardly have troubled the opposition goalkeeper Fernando Muslera had he been relaxing at his far post sipping a drink. In the 5-0 defeat to Russia last week, they failed to muster a single shot on target. 
Wednesday’s overall performance was much improved, yet a lack of penetrative passing was obvious. One passage of play in the opening exchanges saw Saudi Arabia complete 16 passes untroubled without the ball entering the opposition penalty box. When Uruguay finally won possession, they required only four quick exchanges to find Edinson Cavani on the left wing drilling the ball across the front of goal. 
“I don’t share that assessment,” said Pizzi, when it was put to him that his team was too slow to attack. “We played at the speed that was necessary. We need to be accurate, but if you step up the speed you lose accuracy with your passes. We had control of the game and that was why.”
Striker Mohammed Al-Sahlawi had been the focal point of much criticism from Turki Al-Sheikh, the head of Saudi’s General Sports Authority, after the Russia “fiasco” and was dropped from the side against Uruguay. So too was goalkeeper Abdullah Al-Mayouf, another who Al-Sheikh name-checked as having been at fault.
Pizzi, asked whether the scathing assessment from his bosses had forced his hand when it came to team selection, calmly dismissed the suggestion. He also ruled out the notion that administrative issues between the players and the country’s football federation had caused unrest in his squad.
“I have a list of 23 players here and they are all available to play. We are here together and pushing in the same direction. 
“I wanted — and still want — to make the Saudi Arabian people feel proud of our energy and the desire we show in matches. Unfortunately we were unable to do that against Russia and will be playing our next match without any hope of progressing. I hope now they will feel a little more proud even though we are out of the World Cup,” he said.