IOC absolves Kenyan sprint coach Anzrah of wrongdoing

Nairobi, Aug 14 (IANS) The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has absolved John Anzrah, the Kenyan Olympic sprint coach who was expelled from the Rio Olympics for allegedly posing as 800 metres runner Ferguson Rotich.

The IOC said in a statement received in Nairobi on Sunday that there was no preliminary evidence to suggest any attempt to compromise the drug test, but “horrible mix-up”, reports Xinhua.

“Chaperones were sent in search for athletes at the athletes’ dining hall. On the list was the name of a Kenyan athlete, Ferguson Rotich. At the entrance to the dining hall, they noticed the name of the Kenyan athlete on the accreditation of a man wearing a Kenyan tracksuit,” IOC said.

The statement said the chaperones informed the man he had to go to a doping control which he did and signed the doping control form.

The global Olympics body said the misunderstanding was sorted out after Anzrah explained he needed the accreditation to go to the athletes’ dining hall to get breakfast, after which the right athlete was notified and arrived immediately at the doping control station and was tested.

IOC also clarified that Anzrah did not take a doping test as was earlier reported.

Anzrah has put up a spirited defence about his innocence since he arrived back in Kenya Friday night, blaming the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) officials for the fiasco after they dumped him and other members of the technical bench in a Rio apartment without food and other basic amenities.

By the IOC clearing Anzrah of any wrongdoing, the onus is now upon NOCK to explain why the members of the technical bench were booked away from their charges, especially as reports trickled in that a number of joy riders were booked in their place at the athletes’ village.

Anzrah’s problems have elicited strong reactions from Kenyans, with athletics coaches and managers blaming NOCK for his predicament.

–IANS

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