Athletics: Ostapchuk's coach admits drugging her food

Nadzeya Ostapchuk. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Nadzeya Ostapchuk. Photo / Mark Mitchell

The coach of disgraced Belarus shot putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk has confessed he added a banned drug to her food.

It's been revealed overnight the athlete's OIympic gold medal has been handed back to the International Olympic Committee, ready to be given to Kiwi Valerie Adams who placed second at the London Olympics.

Ostapchuk has landed a one-year ban for testing positive for a banned anabolic steroid.

The sentence was lenient because Ostapchuk was completely in the dark that she had doped, according to Alexander Vankhadlo, the head of Belarus' anti-doping agency.

Vankhadlo said that Ostapchuk's coach, Alexander Yefimov, was the only person responsible for the violation of the doping code and was banned for four years.

"Yefimov confessed that he added the banned drug metenolone into Ostapchuk's food because he was worried by her unimpressive results ahead of the Olympics," Vankhadlo told the press.

"Yefimov said that he did it at the training base in Belarus just days before the start of the Games without Ostapchuk's knowledge."

Ostapchuk became the first medallist disqualified from the London Games for doping and was stripped of her women's Olympic shot put title.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) awarded gold to Adams after Ostapchuk provided two urine samples which were both found to contain metenolone.

Russia's Yevgeniya Kolodko was upgraded to silver medal position, with Lijiao Gong of China taking bronze.

Vankhadlo told Belarusian state media belTA that Ostapchuk had already returned the gold medal to the International Olympic Committee.

Adams said on Twitter said she is only just hearing of the news the medal has been returned to the IOC but "it's a great sign, I hope".

Ostapchuk had been competing in her third Olympics in London. She finished fourth in Athens in 2004 and won bronze in Beijing four years ago.

- Newstalk ZB/nzherald.co.nz

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