World Anti-Doping Agency defends president Sir Craig Reedie

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Football News

The World Anti-Doping Agency has defended its British president after new claims relating to Russia's doping crisis.

According to a BBC report, WADA president Sir Craig Reedie wrote a note last August that was apparently passed to IAAF vice-president Sergei Bubka, seemingly alerting the former pole-vault champion to a German television investigation into drugs in athletics.

The BBC pictured the brief note, which ends: "Hope no more damage will be done."

The August 1 documentary - titled 'Doping - Top Secret: The Shadowy World of Athletics' - was the second by German broadcaster ARD to highlight such problems in international track and field.

Reedie responded at the time in a WADA statement that said the organisation was "very disturbed by these new allegations", saying they would "shake the foundation of clean athletes worldwide".

After the subsequent emergence of the note from Reedie to Bubka, said by the BBC to have been delivered on the day of the documentary's broadcast and during an International Olympic Committee meeting in Malaysia at which both men were present, WADA insisted its president had done nothing wrong.

WADA spokesman Ben Nichols told the BBC: "This certainly was not meant to imply in any way that the WADA president wouldn't want doping issues to be exposed."

Russia's athletics reputation was so damaged by allegations of state-sponsored doping that its competitors are currently banned from international events.

Hajo Seppelt, a German journalist who exposed Russian corruption in the ARD documentary, believes Reedie took the wrong approach by apparently looking to make Bubka aware of looming allegations.

Quoted by the BBC, Seppelt said: "It is so embarrassing for the president of the world body who is fighting at the top against doping.

"He is more interested to avoid any damage for sports instead of doing the opposite - to fight against corruption and doping in sports."

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