China’s Olympic Team Loaded with Doping Scandal

( – The 31 members of the Chinese Olympic swim team set to compete in the Paris Olympics next month will include 11 swimmers who were involved in the 2021 doping scandal that went unreported until April of this year.

Just seven months before the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, 23 Chinese swimmers tested positive for the banned substance TMZ (trimetazidine). None of the swimmers were punished or barred from competing in the Tokyo Games where some even went on to medal in events, including two gold medalists.

China claimed that the swimmers accidentally ingested TMZ when they ate food tainted with the drug while staying in a hotel in the Hebei Province. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) accepted China’s explanation and quietly cleared the swimmers to compete in the Tokyo Games.

The Chinese Swimming Association released its roster for the Paris Games on June 18 and among its 31-member team were 11 who tested positive for TMZ before the 2021 Tokyo Games, including Zhang Yufei, who took home the gold medal in women’s 200-meter freestyle relay and women’s 200-meter butterfly, and the gold medal winner of the men’s 200-meter individual medley, Wang Shun.

When the news first broke about the 2021 doping, USA Swimming’s Athletes Advisory Council and the Athletes Commission for Team USA urged President Joe Biden to request an independent investigation into WADA’s decision to clear the swimmers.

US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) CEO Travis Tygart described the revelations as “crushing” and said WADA and the Chinese “swept these positives under the carpet.”

The Chinese Anti-Doping Agency accused the USADA of making “false accusations” and “misleading” and “defamatory reports.”

It was only after the story broke that WADA announced that it launched an independent review of its handling of the incident and said it sent a team to assess China’s anti-doping program.

WADA banned Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva before the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics after she also tested positive for TMZ.

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