IOC's 'no' to 15 Russians

The Hamilton heavyweight fought in Paris last weekend for the British Lionhearts in the World Series of Boxing

Three days before the start of the 23rd Olympic Winter Games, almost three dozen Russian athletes on Tuesday filed a last-minute appeal to have their doping bans lifted so they can compete in Pyeongchang.

The court had previously said it did not plan to hear their case until after the Olympics.

"We can't comment on what just happened at the panel".

Bach, asked whether he had presided over a "fiasco", said this week's International Olympic Committee session had overwhelmingly backed a vote of confidence in the handling of the crisis. "All our documents and words were heard".

The German insisted the International Olympic Committee could not act exclusively on the damning findings of systemic doping by Russians at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics alone as any disciplinary action resulting from the McLaren Report would not have been successful. If they win, it would force the committee to accept athletes it considers to be linked to doping offenses.

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They are being referred to as OARs (Olympic Athletes from Russia) and aren't wearing the usual Russian colors of white, red and blue.

The petition follows the IOC's refusal of a request Monday for 15 Russian athletes and coaches "cleared of doping" to attend the Pyeongchang Games. "If there's a positive ruling, they'll fly in".

The IOC in December determined that Russian athletes who proved they were clean would be allowed to compete as neutrals in the Games. The 13 athletes and two coaches in that group included cross-country skiing gold medalist Alexander Legkov and skeleton gold medalist Alexander Tretiakov. The IOC commission, however, refused to send them individual invitations for the 2018 Games.

CAS Secretary General Matthieu Reeb told reporters that the hearings would resume at 12:00 (0300 GMT) on Thursday and a final decision could be made by the end of that day.

Bach insisted the IOC has dealt with the issue as best it can and says the IOC, CAS and the World Anti-Doping Agency will convene to ensure a repeat of the chaotic build-up to a second successive Olympics, after Rio 2016, will not be repeated.

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