Dame Valerie Adams' unbeaten record across 56 internationally-ranked athletics meetings between August 2010 and July 2015 could be super-sized to 95.

The Herald on Sunday understands the International Association of Athletics Federations is considering an extension to the doping ban on Belarusian shot putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk, which would include the period between her 2008 and 2012 Olympic disqualifications.

In January 2017, the International Olympic Committee expunged Ostapchuk's third placing at the Beijing Games after retrospective testing of her urine sample contained banned substances.

An IAAF decision on any subsequent punishment has been absent until now, but that could soon change.


The logic is that once you are disqualified for doping at an Olympics, you cannot compete at the next Games - and often throughout the four-year cycle.

Ostapchuk consistently "beat" Adams across the 2010 season, including breaking the New Zealander's previous winning streak at the world indoor championships in March at Doha.

Before that, Adams was last defeated - again by Ostapchuk - at the 2007 World Athletics Final in Stuttgart. The Belarusian recorded 20.45m to Adams' 20.40m.

If a backdated ban is imposed on Ostapchuk's already disgraced career, it will present Adams with another bittersweet sporting moment. The double Olympic and four-time world champion suffered the indignity of losing to Ostapchuk at the London Games.

Adams accepted silver, but eventually received gold at a ceremony in Auckland when the Belarusian's cheating was exposed.

As a 19-year-old at her maiden Games in Athens she missed the top eight and the opportunity for three more puts. Four of those ahead of her have since received doping bans.

If Ostapchuk is meted out more punishment, 39 extra straight wins will further cement Adams' legacy as one of the world's greatest field athletes. However, it remains unclear whether she would be entitled to seek compensation for financial losses.

Adams' streak between losses would extend to seven years, nine months and 11 days from September 23, 2007 to her fifth placing at the Paris Diamond League meet on July 4, 2015.


A comparison of note is American 400m hurdling legend Edwin Moses.

He remained invincible for 122 consecutive races, including 107 finals, from September 2, 1977 in Dusseldorf until June 4, 1987 in Madrid. His stretch between defeats was nine years, nine months and nine days.

Adams has enjoyed a year of achievement on multiple fronts. The 33-year-old was appointed a Dame of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the New Year's honours list and became a mother for the first time last month, giving birth to daughter Kimoana Josephine Adams-Price.

Other NZ streaks

• Rowing: Eric Murray and Hamish Bond went 69 international races, 24 regattas and eight seasons without defeat in the men's coxless pair, culminating in consecutive Olympic gold medals.

• Rugby: Auckland's 1985-93 Ranfurly Shield reign set the standard for professional rugby before its time. They defended the Log o' Wood 61 times before Waikato prised it away.

• Cricket: Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum became the first cricketer to play 100 consecutive tests from debut in the opening match against Australia at Wellington in 2016.