Russian Akkaev gets 8-year ban for third doping offence

FILE PHOTO: Khadzhimurat Akkaev of Russia competes in the men's 105kg weightlifting competition during the World Weightlifting Championships at Disney Village in Marne-la-Vallee outside Paris, November 12, 2011. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

MOSCOW: Russia’s former world weightlifting champion Khadzhimurat Akkaev has been banned for eight years for a third doping offence since 2005, the domestic weightlifting federation said.

The 33-year-old, who won the world title in the 105kg category in Paris in 2011 and silver medal in the 94kg at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, will remain suspended until August 1, 2024.

“The International Weightlifting Federation has notified us that Khadzhimurat Akkaev has been disqualified for eight years,” Aleksandar Petrov, head of the anti-doping commission of Russia’s weightlifting federation told TASS news agency.

“Such a lengthy punishment is explained by the fact that the athlete has already violated anti-doping rules three times during his career.”

Petrov said that Akkaev could appeal his ban, adding the weightlifter had not contacted the Russian Federation to discuss the issue.

Russian weightlifting has suffered repeated embarrassment in recent years due to doping cases.

Russia’s athletics federation on Friday said it would withdraw its appeal against the decision by the global athletics governing body IAAF to prolong its suspension over evidence of state-sponsored doping.