When Ilya Ilyin was caught twice by the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) reanalysis testing from the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, many believed that was the end of the Kazakhstani weightlifter’s career. However, the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) just announced that Ilyin would only be suspended for two years.
The two-year sanction was a shock to many and the IWF published a statement on the reason for why the sanction was only two years.
In the IWF’s statement, “The Hearing Panel of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) concluded disciplinary proceedings against Ilya Ilyin and applied the greatest possible sanction against the athlete that is permitted (two years of ineligibility) under the World Anti-Doping Code.
“Although the Athlete committed Anti-Doping Rule Violations both at the Beijing and the London Olympic Games, IWF had no other choice but to consider the two violations as one according to the applicable rules.”
According to the IWF, the rules at the time of the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, an athlete could only receive a second sanction if the athlete was aware of the first violation beforehand. So because both failed tests came back at the same time, the IWF rulebook states, “the violations shall be considered together as one single first violation, and the sanction imposed shall be based on the violation that carries the more severe sanction.” (World Anti-Doping Code. Article 10.7.4.1).”
Ilyin’s suspension will end in June 2018, but he will not be able to compete until Kazakhstan’s sanction is lifting on October 19, 2018. Either way, one of the greatest weightlifters will be eligible for the 2020 Olympics.