O’Rourke in line for bronze

Derval O’Rourke’s coach Terri Cahill is shocked at the news that European Indoor 60m hurdles champion Nevin Yanit of Turkey has been charged for failing multiple drug tests which could see the Cork woman boosted to the bronze medal as a result.

“I am shocked at the multiple positives,” said Cahill in relation to the IAAF statement on Yanit’s failed tests yesterday which also included Olympic 1,500m champion Asli Cakir Alptekin of Turkey.

“Anyone can unwittingly take a supplement and fail a test. She’s obviously knowingly taken it if it’s multiple failures.

“It’s sickening really. Not only has Yanit done her out of a medal at the indoors but she did her out of a gold medal at the European outdoors in 2010.”

O’Rourke finished second to Yanit on that occasion in Barcelona in the 100m hurdles with an Irish record of 12.65 seconds.

“We were always suspicious. She only ran three or four races before the Olympics and then finished fifth. That’s not natural,” said Cahill who coaches O’Rourke along with her husband Sean.

O’Rourke has seen her funding cut and Cahill feels this is unfair given the circumstances she faces as a clean athlete.

“She was cut for her performances in Daegu [world championships] and London because she was deemed to have under performed — yet she is a clean athlete. All her training would gear her towards a good championship performance. If she dips on the day its because she’s a clean athlete.”

Cahill is buoyed though by the fact that they are catching the drug cheats.

“I feel the sport is a little bit cleaner. It reassures you that WADA and authorities are closing in on the drug cheats.”

O’Rourke, who was unavailable for comment, is going to Atlanta today for some early season races and Cahill would love for the situation, which has been referred to the Turkish athletic federation, to be sorted upon her return for the European Team Championships in Santry on June 22-23.

“It would be super if it was all sorted by the European Cup and she could be presented with the medal in Santry. She would be thrilled.”


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