Vitaly Melnikov & Eight-Year Doping Ban Highlight How & Why The System Is Broken

Vitaly Melnikov - banned for 2 years, now for eight years - Russia's catalogue of woe places it on the podium of Shame

It was April 20 this year, just in time for the Russian nationals and Olympic trials, when Vitaly Melnikov returned to seek national-team selection after having served a doping suspension of two years for EPO, the blood booster. Now, he’s effectively gone for life: an eight-year ban has been imposed on the latest Russian doping case. That makes the Russian case file of woe second to none in world swimming – and fit for third place on the all-time ranking of rogue nations in the pool after the GDR and China.

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It was April 20 this year, just in time for the Russian nationals and Olympic trials, when Vitaly Melnikov returned to seek national-team selection after having served a doping suspension of two years for EPO, the blood booster. Now, he’s effectively gone for life: an eight-year ban has been imposed on the latest Russian doping case. That makes the Russian case file of woe second to none in world swimming – and fit for third place on the all-time ranking of rogue nations in the pool after the GDR and China.

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