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32 Russian Athletes File Appeals for Last-Minute Olympics Spots

Viktor An Sergei Fadeichev / TASS

Thirty-two Russian athletes are appealing bans imposed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in the hopes of getting last-minute spots at the upcoming Winter Games in South Korea.

The IOC barred the Russian Olympic team from competing in the 2018 Games opening this week over an investigation into a state-run doping program. A week after overturning bans against 28 Russian athletes, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) announced that it had opened a procedure against the IOC decision based on the appeals of 32 more Russian athletes.

“The applicants challenge the IOC decision refusing to invite them to participate in the 2018 Olympic Winter Games,” the sports court said in a statement Tuesday.

The athletes lodging the appeal include six-time speed skating gold medalist Viktor Ahn and cross-country skiing world champion Sergei Ustyugov, as well as three hockey players, the Associated Press reported.

The Swiss-based CAS said the hearing will likely take place on Wednesday, two days ahead of the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games.

The IOC confirmed last month that nearly 170 individual athletes who passed its anti-doping panel will be allowed to participate in the games in neutral uniforms as “Olympic Athletes from Russia.”

The committee declined to invite 13 of the 28 Russian athletes and two coaches whose Olympic bans were overturned by the CAS last week.

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