Triple champion Taymazov stripped of 2008 gold for doping

The Uzbekistan wrestler won gold in the men’s 96-120kg freestyle wrestling in Beijing.

Artur Taymazov stands on the podium during the men's freestyle 120kg final wrestling match medal ceremony at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.   -  AFP

A highly decorated wrestling champion from Uzbekistan and two Olympic silver medallists in wrestling and weightlifting were stripped of their medals on Wednesday for taking banned substances, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said.

The IOC is retesting stored samples from the 2008 Beijing Games and London 2012 in a renewed bid to crack down on doping that has tarnished the Olympics. More than 100 competitors from both Games have been snared and three more were disqualified on Wednesday for doping.

Chief among them was Uzbekistan's Artur Taymazov, 37, who won gold in the men's 96-120kg freestyle wrestling in Beijing. Reanalysis of his samples tested positive for the banned steroids turinabol and stanozolol.

Taymazov also won gold at Athens 2004 and London 2012 and is a double world champion. He keeps those medals. Vasyl Fedoryshyn, 36, from Ukraine, who won silver in 2008 in the men's 55-60kg freestyle wrestling, also took turinabol, the IOC said.

The third competitor stripped of medal was Russia's Svetlana Tzarukaeva, 29, who took home from London 2012 the silver medal in the women's 63kg weightlifting. She, too, took turinabol, said IOC, which began retesting stored samples prior to the Rio Games last summer, from which the Russian track-and-field team was banned for state-sponsored doping.

Moscow denies being behind any doping programme. The IOC, using improved testing techniques, has retested hundreds of samples.

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