BRITISH Olympic Association chairman Colin Moyinhan has said that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has passed Chinese swimmer Ye Shiwen as clean.
• Colin Moyinhan says WADA has passed Ye Shiwen as clean
• Ye broke world record in 400m individual medley
• Performance provoked widespread suspicion
Moyinhan held a press conference earlier today to make the announcement while criticising suggestions that performance-enhancing drugs were behind Ye’s gold medal-winning swim in the 400m individual medley.
“We know how on top of the game WADA are and WADA have passed her as clean. That’s the end of the story.
“And it is regrettable that there is so much speculation out there.
“I don’t like it. I think it is wrong. That athlete, or indeed any athlete that has never tested positive is an athlete who should be supported by her federation and, indeed, everybody in the Olympic movement.
“Let us recognise that there is an extraordinary swimmer out there who deserves the recognition of her talent in these Games.”
Earlier, Duncan Goodhew had warned against “irresponsible” and “destructive” judgment of Ye after American swimming coach John Leonard described her world-record breaking race as “disturbing”.
Goodhew, Olympic Village Deputy Mayor, and a gold medallist in the men’s 100 metres breaststroke in the 1980 Moscow Olympics, said competitors were innocent until proven guilty - and that there were always “incredible improvements” in performance at large sporting events such as the Olympic Games.
“There are always incredible improvements in any large sporting event such as the Olympic Games, and of course, in terms of that, innocent until proven guilty,” he said.
“I think it is very destructive and very irresponsible of anybody to accuse people until they are proven guilty.”
China’s appalling past record for their swimmers failing doping tests has led to inevitable suspicions over the teenager, who took five seconds off her personal best and more than a second off the world record in the 400m individual medley.
Ye’s swim was described as “insanely fast” by previous world record holder Steph Rice - indeed, in the final 50m, Ye swam faster than the men’s champion Ryan Lochte.
Mr Leonard, the executive director of the World Swimming Coaches Association, said the performance was “disturbing” and “unbelievable”.
He added: “We want to be very careful about calling it doping.
“The one thing I will say is that 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.
“That last 100m was reminiscent of some old East German swimmers, for people who have been around a while.”