Pound: IOC’s ‘unanimous conclusion’ on Qinghua coach ‘just doesn’t jibe’

There is a “unanimous conclusion” that China’s Qinghua coach Peng Shuai is “fine,” according to International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound.

The controversy center around Peng’s complaint that the IOC had ordered him to disqualify her teammate.

Peng said she was in the lead heading into the 800-meter final and had a clean track record. She finished third behind Margaret Zhang of China and Sarah Robles of the United States. Peng was disqualified and Zhang, Robles and the third-place finisher, Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, stood atop the podium.

But Peng said two days before the final that the IOC had warned her to disqualify Zhang. Peng alleged that Zhang interfered with her.

This is not the first time a Chinese coach has made a controversial complaint to the IOC that has ended up in a dispute. This is also not the first time the IOC has rejected the claim.

“I would never have gotten involved in that,” Pound said. “I’m sad that a lot of people don’t pay attention to the documentation that’s presented here. The last two or three years, there has been a lot of documentation in respect of a number of this year’s athletes that comes back to the IOC. There is unanimity among the athletes that there’s no physical contact. That just doesn’t jibe at all with the Chinese report. The fact that the Chinese reported to the IOC, ‘the IOC ordered her to disqualify a teammate,’ they were telling the truth.”

The IOC wouldn’t comment on the case to the media.

Peng cited her thoughts in a letter to the International Association of Athletics Federations.

“There should be a clear order from the director of athletics to disqualify Zhang from this final when she had no intention to engage in any illegal behavior,” Peng wrote to IAAF president Sebastian Coe. “The secretary general informed me that the IAAF has an agreement with the IOC and the IOC had stated that it wanted Zhang disqualified and Peng disqualified along with her as a compromise with the three athletes, while people believe Zhang stole the gold medal from Peng.”

We’ll have more on this coming up.

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