- Title: Russian athletes cleared by IAAF prepare for international competitions
- Date: 25th May 2017
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) SIDOROVA'S COACH, SVETLANA ABRAMOVA, SAYING: "The athletes who have never doped, are not using doping now. I do not understand how it can be called a problem of athletics. It is not athletics' problem. It is a problem of certain athletes."
- Embargoed: 8th June 2017 18:34
- Keywords: sprint pole vault doping London championships athletics championships Russia
- Location: SOCHI, RUSSIA
- City: SOCHI, RUSSIA
- Country: Russia
- Topics: Athletics,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA00C6IC8ZZZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Russian athletes opened the summer season at a team's championships in the Black Sea resort town of Sochi on Thursday (May 25).
As the Russian Athletics Federation remains banned from international competition by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), Russia will not have a team at this year's World Championships, which takes place in London in August.
But 12 Russian athletes were cleared to compete as neutrals by the board of the IAAF as they had met "exceptional eligibility criteria".
One of those cleared to compete, sprinter Kristina Sivkova, has already taken part in the Ðœeeting de Montgeron tournament in France on May 13 - her first international competition in over 18 months. She also plans to compete in Filothei Women Gala in Greece at the end of the month.
The leader of the Russian female pole vaulting team Anzhelika Sidorova plans to take part in the Diamond League in Rome on June 8. It will be her first international competition for almost two years.
Sidorova's coach said it was still unclear if she would be able to take part in the world championships in London even if her result is good enough.
Earlier in April, IAAF chief Sebastian Coe said he was disappointed by the lack of progress being made by Russia in cleaning up its anti-doping regime.
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