Neil Black will stand down from UK Athletics in wake of Alberto Salazar ban

UK Athletics performance director Neil Black will stand down later this month.

The news comes just nine months short of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo and on the back of Britain’s lowest World Championship medal tally since 2005.

A statement read today: “UK Athletics have announced that Neil Black will leave his role as performance director at the end of October.

“Neil will commence a detailed handover with performance staff until his departure and will fulfil his role supporting Mo Farah at this weekend’s Chicago marathon.”

Sources have told GIVEMESPORT that Alberto Salazar’s four-year ban was at the heart of the decision, but a failure to meet medal targets was also provided as a reason.

Black steps down before Tokyo 2020

There had previously been concerns that Black had maintained too close of a relationship with Salazar, whom the Brit has called ‘a genius’ and ‘one of the best people to work with.’

UK Athletics launched a review into Salazar in 2015 after that year’s BBC documentary, but found no reason to be concerned about the man who was coaching Sir Mo Farah.

The drama surrounding Salazar has seen a number of his former athletes embroiled in doping allegations and Sifan Hassan was peppered with questions about the American in Doha.

It must be stressed that, in spite of Salazar’s four-year ban, USADA are yet to take action against any athletes who may or may not have profited from the doping violations in question.

The search will begin for Black’s replacement to help clear the cloud of doping doubt, while also gearing up the team for necessary improvements going into Tokyo.

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