China’s Sun Yang will miss the Tokyo Olympics. He was suspended for four years and three months by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Sun Yang hammered a vial of his blood during a doping control, announced the Lausanne-based body. Started on February 28, 2020, this suspension will therefore end in June 2024, i.e. before the opening of the Paris Games. Sun Yang will be 32 at this time, however.
In February 2020, the CAS had already imposed an eight-year suspension for the act committed by the swimmer, i.e. the maximum penalty. But to general amazement, the Swiss Federal Court overturned this decision in December, sanctioning the “partiality” of the president of the panel of arbitrators and former head of Italian diplomacy, Franco Frattini.
Denouncing the cruelty inflicted on animals in China, while the Sun Yang case was under investigation, the magistrate had indeed engaged in a series of “extremely violent” and racist tweets, the Court revealed.
But the arbitration body upheld the suspension (albeit with a shorter duration): four years plus three months of a previous anti-doping rule violation.
In 2014 and in the greatest secrecy, Sun Yang had tested positive for a stimulant (trimetazidine), made public long after the sanction had been served. Adored in his country and muse of the big brands, Sun Yang has three Olympic gold medals to his list, in London 2012 (400 m and 1,500 m freestyle), then Rio 2016 (200 m), as well as eleven world titles.