Winter Paralympics: Thirty Russian 'neutrals' can compete in Pyeongchang

Russia's Sochi Paralympics team
Sixty-nine Para-athletes represented Russia at the 2014 Sochi Paralympics

Thirty Para-athletes from Russia will be allowed to compete as "neutrals" at the Winter Paralympics.

The country has been banned from Paralympic competition since August 2016 after a report stated athletes benefited from state-sponsored doping.

Any Para-athlete wanting to be selected as a neutral must have had two anti-doping tests in the past six months.

However, the International Paralympic Committee is considering applications from other Russian Para-athletes too.

The Pyeongchang Paralympics will take place between 9-18 March.

The Neutral Paralympic Athletes delegation consists of 10 competitors in alpine skiing, 12 in Nordic skiing and three in snowboard competition. There will also be a wheelchair curling team made up of five players.

Last month, the IPC said there was a "different picture" in Russia compared with 2016, when the country's anti-doping system was found to be "totally compromised, corrupted and open to abuse".

However, it added that the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) had still not met two of the criteria it had been asked to meet.

They are:

  • The full reinstatement of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (Rusada) by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada).
  • The provision of an official response specifically and adequately addressing the findings of the McLaren report.

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