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'Troubled' Sun slams detractors' allegations

By SHI FUTIAN | China Daily | Updated: 2019-08-29 08:29
Sun Yang of China celebrates winning men's 400m Freestyle Final at the 18th FINA World Swimming Championships in Gwangju, South Korea, on July 21, 2019. [Photo/Agencies]

'Troubled' Sun slams detractors' allegations

Chinese swimming ace Sun Yang says his life and training have been "troubled" by public opinion influenced by "distorted" facts regarding the controversy swirling around him for the past year。

The Olympic and world champion is facing a Court of Arbitration for Sport hearing over an incident last September at his home in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, when he rejected a doping test after questioning the credentials of testers.

"This is my 21st year as an elite athlete. I have devoted all I have to the career I love and I have been battling with injuries," the 27-year-old, who has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, said on Weibo on Tuesday.

58彩票"For all these years, I've been through hundreds of drug tests and each time I strictly followed the rules and cooperated with the officials。

"During last year's test, I found the credentials of three Chinese testers were suspicious, so I immediately contacted my team leader. Every action of mine at that time was under the guidance of my team leader, medical personnel and leaders of the provincial anti-doping center.

"However, certain facts have been distorted to varying degrees. As a result, my training and life have been greatly troubled, far beyond the threshold of tolerance.

"Fortunately, the surveillance cameras recorded everything, otherwise I would not be able to defend myself against irresponsible accusations.

"And the testers were Chinese, so there was no misunderstanding through the communication。 Everything is totally clear。"

Sun's Weibo post went viral on Tuesday night, and related topics had been viewed over 190 million times by noon on Wednesday。

While most fans expressed support for the national icon, some worried if the dispute will put added strain on his preparations for next year's Tokyo Olympics.

Sun competed at the July world championships in Gwangju, South Korea, under the shadow of a World Anti-Doping Agency appeal of a FINA ruling that he did nothing wrong。

Although he won gold in the 200m and 400m freestyle at the worlds, three foreign rivals snubbed him by refusing to shake his hand or join him on the podium.

Zhang Qihuai, Sun's legal representative, also expressed his support on Weibo on Tuesday and accused some media outlets of employing a "double standard" to judge Sun。

Zhang previously pointed out that two of the three testers who failed to produce adequate WADA documentation were later found to be untrained acquaintances of the main testing official。

Despite the outpouring of support, it won't be easy for Sun to walk away from the dispute。 Although FINA in January ruled he did not violate doping regulations, WADA appealed to the CAS and is seeking stricter punishment。

The open hearing by CAS will probably be held in Switzerland but is "unlikely to be before the end of October", the court said on its website earlier this month.

Public trial is not common in the court's history。 Sun's case marks just the second time that a CAS hearing will be held in public。

Sun served a three-month doping suspension in 2014 for taking the stimulant trimetazidine, which he claimed was to treat a heart condition.

A second doping violation would inevitably bring a harsher sanction and could rule him out of next year's Tokyo Olympics.

"Sun Yang needs to be respected, so I showed my support towards him," renowned Chinese sports commentator Han Qiaosheng said on Weibo on Tuesday.

"I hope he will get a fair result. I also hope he can ignore all the noise and try his best to prepare for the Tokyo Olympics."

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