Drug cheat lodges appeal against career-ending ban

Banned Chinese swimmer Sun Yang has lodged an appeal against his eight-year suspension to the Swiss federal court.


News Corp Australia can reveal that in a last-ditch effort to be eligible to swim at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, Sun formally filed the appeal against the Court of Arbitration for Sport's lengthy ban in the Swiss court which was registered on April 29.


The suspension follows a controversial drug test at Zhejiang in September 2018 where a blood test of Sun's was destroyed.


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The court action is the latest in a protracted legal argument about the destruction of a vial of Sun's blood after a drug test, which occurred because Sun, his mother and his coach all believed the correct testing procedures had not been followed.


Sun in particular believed the drug tester was not fully accredited to take the blood.


The issue exploded at the world swimming championships when Sun, 28, won the 400m, relegating Australian Mack Horton to the silver medal.


Horton was so upset that Sun had been allowed to participate he refused to stand on the podium next to the Chinese star in protest.


The world swimming body FINA had originally cleared Sun to compete after an internal investigation of the blood testing furore, but the World Anti-Doping Agency appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in a case against Sun and FINA.


The CAS decision, which saw Sun given an eight-year suspension, was handed down in February after a November 2019 hearing that was complicated by translation issues.

The appeal to the Swiss court is a bid to have the CAS verdict overturned on procedural grounds.


Last month Sun was reported to be continuing to train with the Chinese national team for the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Mack Horton and his protest against Sun Yang at last year’s world championships.
Mack Horton and his protest against Sun Yang at last year’s world championships.

The Beijing Youth Daily newspaper reported that Sun was one of 17 swimmers called up to the national squad for training from April 1 to June, in either Zhejiang or in Beijing as a measure to combat the coronavirus pandemic.


But once the newspaper report was published the Chinese swimming authorities confirmed that Sun would not be in training.


An official told News Corp Australia that Sun had lodged the appeal but that the case documents were sealed and not publicly available at this time.


It was uncertain if Sun's appeal will be held in open or closed court.

Originally published as Drug cheat lodges appeal against career-ending ban