BERN: Yelena Isinbayeva has failed in an appeal to the Swiss federal court to be allowed to defend her Olympic pole vault crown at the Rio Games writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
But she still intends to come to Brazil next week to stand for election to the International Olympic Committee’s athletes’ commission.
Isinbayeva, poster girl for Russian sport, had led the opposition to the decision of the International Association of Athletics Federations to suspend the country from membership and thus bar its track and field athletes from international competition in the doping cover-up scandal.
An initial appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne has been rejected and Isinbayeva took up her right to continue the fight to the Swiss Federal Court, the last possible option.
Today she said that this appeal, too, had ended in failure.
She wrote on her Instagram account: “This is my final post about my chances of performing in the Olympic Games in Rio. Today we have received another rejection but this time from the Swiss Federal Court.
“I filed a lawsuit to appeal the decision by CAS [which] could have allowed me to participate in the Olympic Games but to my great regret the lawsuit was rejected. My last hope of competing at the Olympic Games has disappeared.
“Dear friends, over and over again I express my gratitude for your support, for your faith and hope, for the petitions and all kind words in support. Even though I won’t have a chance to thank you with my performance in Rio, the main victory has already happened – your hearts are with me!
“It’s good to know that we all share the sense of this injustice together and the decision to take action rather than merely expressing regret.”
Isinbayeva concluded by confirming that she will fly to Rio on Agust 14 to stand as a candidate for the IOC athletes’ commission.
She has been allowed to maintain her candidacy despite missing the formal deadline for applications.