The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has recommended to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that it use 2016 doping sample bottles for the upcoming Winter Olympics after the agency’s inquiry into last year’s version showed the bottles could be reopened after a sample was produced.
On Tuesday, the committee said it was “very concerned” about claims the new sample bottles, provided by Swiss manufacturer Berlinger, could be opened, and the Swedish anti-doping agency said it would stop using them.
WADA on Wednesday said in a statement that it had confirmed that a proportion of the new generation of BEREG-KIT Geneva security bottles were “susceptible to manual opening without evidence of tampering, whether they have been frozen or not.”
Those security bottles were introduced in September last year.
After determining that some of the newer bottles could be “manually opened after initial proper locking,” WADA said it had sourced enough of the 2016 doping sample bottles, which were first used at the Rio Olympics, to cover the entire testing program for the Pyeongchang Games, which start on Friday next week in South Korea.
“At this stage, our clear recommendation to the IOC is that it continue to use the earlier model, which is still used by a number of testing authorities around the world. This should be seen as a precautionary measure that guarantees the integrity of the doping control process at the games,” WADA director-general Olivier Niggli said.
“For the longer term, WADA will continue to gather information and explore solutions with Berlinger and others in order to maintain the integrity of the process. Berlinger has already agreed to restart production of the 2016 model pending other development,” he added.
The newer doping bottles were introduced last year to increase security after investigators found Russians were able to surreptitiously open bottles at the Sochi Olympics and exchange dirty urine samples with clean ones previously provided by the same athlete.
The NBA said was re-evaluating its training program in China following allegations of abuse of young players by local staff and harassment of foreign staffers at a facility in Xinjiang. The comments come after a report by ESPN that quoted unnamed American coaches as saying that Chinese coaches hit young players. One American coach who worked at a camp in Xinjiang complained of harassment by local police, the sports network said. “The allegations in the ESPN article are disturbing,” NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum said in an e-mail statement on Thursday. “We ended our involvement with the basketball academy in Xinjiang in June
Coming from the business world, New York Liberty owner Joe Tsai (蔡崇信) did not understand why his WNBA franchise did not have a chief executive officer similar to the team’s NBA counterpart the Brooklyn Nets, which Tsai also owns. For Tsai, it was about equality, so he did something about it. The 56-year-old Taipei-born billionaire businessman and philanthropist promoted Keia Clarke to the position last week — making her the first chief executive officer in the team’s history. The WNBA veteran became the third black woman to currently be in charge of a franchise in the league, joining Los Angeles Sparks president
LEAVING IT LATE: Rakuten added late runs last night to add to wins on Wednesday against the Brothers and the Lions on Friday that went down to the last batter The Rakuten Monkeys rallied to post three late runs for another close win, prevailing 5-3 over the Uni-President Lions yesterday as Taiwan’s second-half CPBL season got started with lower scoring output, but exciting finishes. It was Rakuten’s third win in a row. In two games this week, they seized victory in dramatic fashion with their last at-bat and have drawn level with the CTBC Brothers on top of the table after yesterday’s results, 0.5 games in front of the Fubon Guardians and 1.5 games ahead of the Lions. It was tied at 1-1 early, with Rakuten hosting the Lions at the Taoyuan Intenational
MONEY MATTERS: While COVID-19 played a major role in the decision, the CTBA also found it hard to secure sponsorship, and ticket sales would have been affected The Yonex Taipei Open badminton tournament has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and a funding shortfall, the CTBA said yesterday. This was the first time that the tournament, a Badminton World Federation (BWF) World Tour Super 300-level competition, has been canceled since it began in 1980. The Taipei Open has been held annually since 1980. The tournament was to be played at the Taipei Arena from Sept. 1 to Sept. 6, with total prize money of US$500,000. The CTBA said that it was deeply concerned about whether the Taipei Open would proceed as scheduled after the BWF announced changes