A new row has erupted after an American Coach accused the 16-year old Chinese swimmer Ye Shiwen of cheating by using performance enhancing drugs to win herself a gold medal whilst also breaking a world record.
Ye Shiwen first competed in the third heat of the Women’s 400m Individual Medley, finishing in 4:31.73, qualifying for the final. Expectations were high in the final as in this heat, she improved by two seconds when comparing it to her time in the 2010 Asian Games. She won the gold medal with a finishing time of 4:28.43, which meant that she improved on her earlier swim by quite some time and in doing so she broke the world record. She swam the last 50 metres faster than Ryan Lochte (US men’s gold medal winner) to the shock of everyone.
Unfortunately for her, what was supposed to be a joyous occasion was soon turned into controversy when American coach John Leonard described her performance as “disturbing” and “unbelievable” and went on to say that every time such a performance is given by an Olympian, there turns out to be a case of doping.
There was and continues to be no evidence to support Mr Leonard’s statements and since the comments have been made, high profile figures such as the head of the IOC’s anti-doping program have defended Ye Shiwen as well as many former Olympians.
This seems to be simply a case of the US coach being a sore loser and surely he should soon be making an apology to end this row that is now hanging over the heads of both the nations athletes and even if there were suspicions, these comments should have not been made in public, instead to the authorities for a real analysis of evidence, if Mr Leonard had any.