(ATR) The Olympic boxing and table tennis federations are among the first IFs to partner with the agency.
The International Boxing Federation (AIBA) announced Tuesday that it had joined, four days after the ITTF signed up. Both federations have previously worked with the Doping-Free Sport Unit of the Global Association of International Sports Federations, now incorporated into the International Testing Agency (ITA)
AIBA said it was fully outsourcing its anti-doping activities to the ITA, including testing, result management for any rule violations, intelligence-gathering, test-distribution planning, education and TUE exemptions.
“Protecting our athletes and the integrity of our sport is of utmost importance and anti-doping is at the top of AIBA’s priorities,” said AIBA executive director Tom Virgets.
“Our partnership with the ITA offers a new scope of anti-doping activities that our athletes and our officials can benefit from – we are looking forward to rolling out these programs as soon as possible.”
The boxing federation said joining the ITA “reaffirms AIBA’s strong efforts to bring positive change and further improvements to its governance and anti-doping system”. They have been top priorities for the federation's interim leader Gafur Rahimov as part of a wave of changes demanded by the IOC in a shake-up of the federation.
“AIBA is committed to clean sport and I am pleased that we are amongst the first Olympic international federations to join the ITA. This new partnership is very much aligned with AIBA’s strategy going forward and represents a big milestone for our organisation and the future of boxing,” he said.
ITA director general Benjamin Cohen, said: “Ensuring clean competitions is central to the integrity and reputation of any sport.
“AIBA’s proactive approach is completely consistent with the ITA’s position as an independent and trusted partner in the protection of clean sport. By entrusting the full range of its anti-doping program to us at the ITA, we hope in turn that we can enable AIBA to focus fully on its core mission of developing boxing.”
Last week, the ITTF announced it was delegating all of its anti-doping work to the ITA, which undertook some anti-doping work at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics under its previous incarnation, the Doping-Free Sport Unit.
“We have been very impressed by the way the ITA has quickly established itself and we are confident we have made the right choice in trusting the ITA with our anti-doping work,” said ITTF president Thomas Weikert.
With the ITA now established and occupying new offices in Lausanne, more partnership announcements are expected in the coming days and weeks.
The ITA will be fully in charge of running the anti-doping program for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics as well as the pre-Games testing program.
Multisport events such as this summer’s Asian Games in Jakarta and Palembang and next year’s European Games in Minsk are expected to benefit from the ITA’s services.
Reported by Mark Bisson
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