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22 Jul, 2019 13:22

Covering herself in glory! Russian pole vaulter celebrates with blanket instead of flag (VIDEO)

Covering herself in glory! Russian pole vaulter celebrates with blanket instead of flag (VIDEO)

Russian junior pole vaulter Aksana Gataullina unfolded a spotted purple blanket instead of the national flag to get around a ban when celebrating victory at the U20 European Championships in Sweden.

The 19-year-old Russian, who won the event with a result of 4m 36cm, embarked on a victory lap during which she waved the blanket instead of the Russian tricolor, which is still banned by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

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All Russian athletes competing in international events governed by the IAAF are obliged to compete as neutrals as the Russian Athletics Federation (RUSAF) has still not been reinstated following a long-running doping row.

Last month, the athletics governing body extended its ban on RUSAF, despite the country being readmitted to the World Anti-doping Agency (WADA) more than six months ago.
The ban has been in place since November 2015 after allegations of widespread doping were brought against Russia.