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arzhakova banned for two years

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Lynsey Sharp

30 April 2013

Russian 800m runner Yelena Arzhakova has been banned for two years for a doping offence, with all of Arzakhova’s results from 12 July 2011 onwards likely to be nullified.

As a result, GB & NI’s Lynsey Sharp (coach: Terrence Mahon) - whose coach during this period was Dave Sunderland - will be promoted from silver to gold medal position in the 800m at the 2012 European Championships and from bronze to silver position in the 800m at the 2011 European Under-23 Championships.

Sharp said: “My reaction to this news, if confirmed to be true, is a mixture of disappointment, satisfaction and elation. I'm disappointed that yet another athlete has been discovered breaking the rules of the sport in order to beat others and win medals, and I'm disappointed further that this athlete competed in the same event as me.

“However I draw satisfaction from the fact that the system is working, that the athlete in question has been caught and will serve a ban. I am elated that my effort on the track has paid off and that a clean athlete is now European Champion. It's a happy day for me and a happy day for athletics."

UK Athletics CEO Niels de Vos said:

“Our congratulations go to Lynsey on the news that she has been upgraded to 2012 European 800 Champion as well as an under 23 silver medal from 2011.

“It is surely a bittersweet moment knowing she did not get the moment on the podium that she deserved in Helsinki but we look forward to making a presentation to her at one of our events this summer in front of her home crowd.”