WADA’s appeal over Nicklas Backstrom not about Sochi silver medal

Nicklas Backstrom

The World Anti-Doping Agency said its appeal over Swedish hockey player Nicklas Backstrom‘s failed drug test case at the Sochi Olympics has nothing to do with the International Olympic Committee’s decision to award Backstrom a silver medal.

“WADA wishes to clarify that the appeal does not in any way relate to the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s decision to award the athlete an Olympic silver medal,” WADA said in a statement.

WADA said Thursday it is appealing an unspecified International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) decision rather than the IOC’s.

Backstrom was suspended for the Sochi Olympic gold-medal game, which Sweden lost to Canada on Feb. 23, after it was found he tested positive for pseudoephedrine (PSE) on Feb. 19. He did not initially receive a silver medal.

The IOC ruled on March 14 that Backstrom should receive a silver medal, which he did receive later this year. The IOC also ruled on March 14 that Backstrom’s gold-medal game suspension was justified, blaming a team doctor, but said he would not be punished further.

WADA announced its appeal Tuesday.

“The decision to exonerate the athlete was recently appealed by WADA to the Court of Arbitration for Sport,” WADA senior manager of media relations and communications Ben Nichols wrote in an email.

WADA has not detailed the nature of its appeal.

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