Wada inspectors finally gain access to Russian drug sample data at third time of asking

A vehicle bearing the insignia of the Investigative Committee, a Russian law enforcement agency, also arrived at the laboratory on Thursday.

Following this week’s visit, Wada’s compliance review committee will meet to decide what action to take. Sir Craig Reedie, the Wada president, had previously said “we are continuing to act on the basis” that the deadline has already been missed “with all the consequences that failure could bring”.

Sanctions against Russia’s doping control agency, Rusada, were controversially lifted in September on the basis that Wada would be granted access to its laboratories by Dec 31. Anti-doping campaigners are hopeful Rusada will be told the sanctions will be reinstated when an independent panel meets to review the case on Jan 14.

However, Russia may strongly appeal against any fresh action if full access is provided this week.

Mims Davies, the Sports Minister, called on Wada to act “quickly and decisively”. She said she was monitoring developments in Russia with “significant interest” after visiting UK Sport for an update on progress ahead of Tokyo 2020.

“We simply must ensure that they are able to compete on a level playing field,” Davies said. “Wada’s role is crucial in this, as an authority and advocate for fair and clean sport. It is essential that they create and foster confidence in their work. I will look to them to act quickly and decisively in any area needed following their visit to Russia and the forthcoming Compliance Review Committee meeting next week.”

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