Indian runner blasts officials and media

  • Other Sport
  • Sunday, 05 Jan 2003

NEW DELHI: Indian middle-distance runner Sunita Rani has lashed out at sports officials and the media after being cleared of doping charges. 

Rani, who tested positive for the banned substance nandrolone during the Asian Games in Busan earlier this year, was on Friday cleared of the charges by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). 

“I’m still trying to take in the fact that my nightmare is over, though my happiness will be complete only when my medals are restored,” Rani wrote in a front-page column in leading daily Hindustan Times

Rani had earlier been cleared by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and is expected to get back her medals later this month. 

Her gold in the 1,500m and bronze in the 5,000m at the Asian Games had been taken away after she tested positive after both of her races and her B samples confirmed the presence of the banned drug. 

However, certain discrepancies in the test procedures in South Korea and a large disparity in results between her A and B samples led to her exoneration. 

But Rani said she felt that despite being cleared a lot of damage had been done. 

“Who will give me back my pride and make up for all the humiliation I have had to go through? It’s been three months of horror, of growing up very suddenly,” she wrote. 

“I have come to terms with the fact that when I was winning, I belonged to India, when I was tainted by charges, I was alone, an outcast. 

“My coach and I were kept in a small room (in Busan) for three days. We could not leave and no one could enter. Those were three indescribable days, with no food, no information and only silence and tears for company.” 

Rani said her whole family had faced the same trauma, with her parents left “heart-broken”. – AFP 

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