Christian Coleman could face ban

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Christian Coleman’s Olympic sprint prospects might be in jeopardy after three missed drug tests, two people familiar with the case told The Associated Press.

The “whereabouts failures” are said to have happened over 12 months, which can be treated as a positive test and doping violation.

The people spoke on condition of anonymity Thursday because cases are considered confidential.

Coleman, 23, is the U.S. 100m champion. In 2017, he finished second to Justin Gatlin at the world championships — and one spot ahead of Usain Bolt.

The 2019 Worlds are next month in Qatar, and Coleman has the world’s leading time in the 100m the past three years. He also qualified for worlds in the 200m.

Athletes are required to provide authorities with their whereabouts so they can be tested for drugs without notice. Failing to provide the information, or not being present when a tester shows up, is considered a violation.

Three missed tests trigger the equivalent of a doping violation. Most who get hit for a first doping violation receive two-year bans, but exceptions are often made for different circumstances.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which deals with cases involving American athletes, does not discuss specific cases.

With the track world looking for someone to fill the massive vacuum Bolt left in the sport when he retired in 2017, Coleman signed a reported seven-figure deal with Nike when he turned pro the same year.

His main rival in the 100m at figures to be Gatlin, who, like Coleman, attended the University of Tennessee.

The 200m was setting up to be one of the featured events at the worlds in a showdown between Coleman and Noah Lyles. This rivalry will be one to watch heading into the Tokyo Games — assuming Coleman is eligible.

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Coronavirus forces Olympic soccer and boxing qualifiers to move

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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Olympic qualifying events in two sports were moved from the Chinese city of Wuhan on Wednesday because of an outbreak of a deadly viral illness.

A four-nation Asian qualifying group for the women’s soccer tournament was switched from the city at the center of the health scare to Nanjing.

The Asia-Oceania boxing qualifying tournament scheduled for Feb. 3-14 in Wuhan was cancelled. No new plans were announced.

The decisions followed Chinese health authorities telling people in Wuhan to avoid crowds and public gatherings.

The Asian Football Confederation said the round-robin group — featuring host China, Australia, Taiwan and Thailand — will be played on Feb. 3-9, retaining the same dates, in Nanjing.

More than 500 people have been infected and at least 17 killed since the outbreak emerged last month. The illness comes from a newly identified type of coronavirus.

Cases have also been reported in the United States, Japan, South Korea and Thailand. All involve people from Wuhan or who recently traveled there.

In the soccer qualifiers in China, two teams advance to a four-nation playoff round in March. That will decide which two teams from Asia join host Japan at the Tokyo Olympics.

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Russia trounces U.S. boys’ hockey team to wrap up Youth Olympic Games

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Russia routed the U.S. 4-0 in the boys’ hockey gold medal game Wednesday, the final day of the Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The U.S. had more penalties (three) than shots (two) in the first period. Russia’s Matvei Michkov converted the first power play and added an even-strength goal later in the period. Another power-play goal in the second period ran the score to 3-0.

Michkov just turned 15 and is projected as a top pick in the 2023 NHL Draft.

The gold medal was Russia’s ninth of the Games, excluding events that featured mixed-nationality teams, and 27th overall medal. Both numbers were the best of the competition.

Switzerland finished second in the medal tally with nine golds and 22 total. Japan, the surprise winner in girls’ hockey, matched Switzerland with nine golds among its 17 medals.

The U.S. had two gold medals and 11 total. Kiernan Fagan took gold in the boys’ ski slopestyle and silver in ski big air. Dusty Henricksen won the boys’ snowboard slopestyle.

Fagan, who turned 18 during the Games, already has a couple of World Cup podiums and finished 12th in slopestyle in last year’s world championships. He also took silver in big air and slopestyle in last year’s world junior championships.

Henricksen, who’ll turn 17 next month, placed 17th in the World Cup big air event last month in Atlanta.

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