China swimmer Ye Shiwen 'clean', says BOA boss Moynihan
Published: 31st Jul 2012 11:44:35
The British Olympic Association's chairman has said teenage Chinese swimmer Ye Shiwen is not a drug cheat, after a US coach cast doubt on her world record-breaking swim.
Lord Colin Moynihan said Ye, 16, had passed drug tests, was "clean" and deserved recognition for her talent.
Ye smashed her personal best by at least five seconds in the 400m Medley.
Senior US coach John Leonard said her performance was disturbing and hinted that doping could have been involved.
Mr Leonard, executive director of the World Swimming Coaches Association, said the performance reminded him of the East German women swimmers in the 1980s, who were doping on a systematic basis.
"History in our sport will tell you that every time we see something, and I will put quotation marks around this, unbelievable, history shows us that it turns out later on there was doping involved," he told the UK's Guardian newspaper.
But Ye, who will compete later in the 200m Medley final, has strongly defended herself and denied that she would ever use banned substances.
China's anti-doping chief has said that Chinese athletes have undergone nearly 100 drugs tests since arriving in London, and that not a single Chinese athlete had tested positive.
Former swimmers, other Olympic champions and experts have all given their support to Ye.
Lord Moynihan told a news conference that the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) was "on top of the game".
"She's been through Wada's programme and she's clean. That's the end of the story. Ye Shiwen deserves recognition for her talent," he said.
Former British Olympic champion Adrian Moorhouse said the rumours appeared to be a case of sour grapes.
"The Chinese might have just found this really talented kid, who can work really hard, has the perfect shape and can cope with all the pressure thrown at her," he told the BBC.
China's swimming team was repeatedly hit by doping scandals in the 1990s.
Seven swimmers tested positive for drugs in the 1994 Asian Games, and four years later four Chinese swimmers failed pre-tournament drug tests before the World Championships in Australia.
Chinese officials insist they have cleaned up the sport, but earlier this year another 16-year-old swimming prodigy, Li Zhesi, failed a drug test.
All medal winners at the Olympics are drug tested. In addition, any athlete whose performance is far better than anything they have achieved before can be targeted for extra tests.
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Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. China swimmer Ye Shiwen 'clean', says BOA boss Moynihan. [Online] (Updated 31 Jul 2012)
Available at: http://www.manchesterwired.co.uk/news.php/1443669-China-swimmer-Ye-Shiwen-clean-says-BOA-boss-Moynihan [Accessed 13th June 2013]
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