Russia may participate in Rio Olympics

Russia will not receive a blanket ban from Rio 2016 following the country’s doping scandal.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will leave it up to individual sports’ governing bodies to decide if Russian competitors are clean and should be allowed to take part.

The decision follows a report in which Canadian law professor Richard McLaren said Russia operated a state-sponsored doping programme from 2011 to 2015.

The Rio Games start on 5 August.

Competitors from Russia who want to take part in the Games will have to meet strict criteria laid down by the IOC.

And any Russian athlete who has served a doping ban will not be eligible for next month’s Olympics.

IOC president Thomas Bach said: “We have set the bar to the limit by establishing a number of very strict criteria which every Russian athlete will have to fulfil if he or she wants to participate in the Olympic Games Rio 2016.

“I think in this way, we have balanced on the one hand, the desire and need for collective responsibility versus the right to individual justice of every individual athlete.”

World Anti Doping Agency (Wada) president Sir Craig Reedie said previously his organisation, which commissioned the McLaren report, wanted the IOC to “decline entries for Rio 2016 of all athletes” submitted by the Russian Olympic and Paralympic committees.