FINA Issues Warnings to Sun Yang and Duncan Scott Following Podium Interaction


Following their interaction on the podium after the men’s 200 free ceremony at the 2019 FINA World Championships Tuesday night in Gwangju, FINA has sent “warning letters” to both gold medalist Sun Yang and bronze medalist Duncan Scott.

“The FINA Executive met today in Gwangju (KOR) to analyse the situation occurred during the men’s 200m free victory ceremony and has decided to send a warning letter to athletes Duncan Scott (GBR) and Sun Yang (CHN),” FINA’s statment read. “Both competitors had an inadequate behaviour on this occasion, which is not acceptable in accordance with the FINA Constitution Rule C 12.1.3.”

Constitution rule 12.1.3 reads that “Any Member, member of a Member, or individual member of a Member may be sanctioned for bringing the sport into disrepute.” Possible sanctions appear to begin with a warning, then another offense would lead to a fine, then another a suspension, and then another “expulsion.”

Sun (1:44.93), facing an upcoming CAS hearing in September regarding the World Anti-Doping Agency’s appeal case against FINA’s decision not to sanction him over his blood vial-smashing incident last September, was awarded gold after initial winner Danas Rapsys was shockingly DQ’d after the race. Japan’s Katsuhiro Matsumoto took silver in 1:45.22, and Scott and Martin Malyutin of Russia ended up tying for the bronze in 1:45.63.

Great Britain’s Scott followed the model set by Australian Mack Horton earlier in the meet, protesting Sun on the podium of the men’s 200 free. Unlike Horton, the 22-year-old Scott did get on the podium for the playing of the Chinese anthem. But Scott then refused to shake Sun’s hand and partake in a group picture with all the medalists after the podium ceremony.

Things appeared to get heated around the handshake incident:

Scott reportedly received a standing ovation from other athletes.

Sun was visibly unhappy with Scott’s actions and appeared to confront him further off the podium. From the broadcast, it looked as though Sun approached Scott and said something along the lines of, “You’re a loser. I’m a winner.” Watch the interaction below:

The 23-year-old Horton also received a “warning letter” from FINA following his initial protest.

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I like how they phrased it so it makes duncan scott seem worse than jang – or is that just me?


“Scott reportedly received a standing ovation from other athletes” Much worse.


Who actually wrote the letter? Can we get a copy? I have some letter writing to do myself.

JP input is too short

I will be really interested to hear how this CAS hearing goes. It just doesn’t seem like anybody in the world-class swimming scene legitimately *likes* Sun Yang, and I can’t imagine it’s just because of the doping stuff.


If CAS hearing prove Sun is innocent, then what a shameful and ugly behave of these swimmers. Actually you should prove yourself in your medal not other way.

working swim mom

If the hearing proves his innocence, then what shameful behavior he has towards his fellow athletes. He has repeatedly been aggressive and disrespectful. If you crave respect, you must first give it. There is an opportunity for him to demonstrate restraint and honor by his own behavior but he seems to choose otherwise. It goes both ways and he doesn’t treat others with the respect he expects.


You are right. He is aggressive person, so he can win so many medals. It is part of him. Indeed, aggressive is not a good behaviour, but it is not wrong! So does Trump.


“aggressive is not a good behavior, but it is not wrong”
Citation needed


Roid rage.

6-beat kick



Chinese troll. Don’t take the bait. Just down vote.


But.. but.. Trump is a… nevermind.. let’s not go there.

13 % Chinese person

Yes he is President of the USA. . Fixed it for you .


Sun Yang is doing to swimming what Trump is doing to China’s economy!


Being aggressive is a virtue of westerners. If one reads a kid-version of US history, you can learn this: we went to Ohio and demanded the land from the French and Indians. They disagreed. We fought them. We demanded Texas from the Spaniards. They did not like the idea, we fought them. Don’t forget California. We didn’t have to fight for Hawaii. The militias took care of it.


That‘s not how CAS works unfortunately, he needs to be proven guilty in order to be banned. He didn‘t destroy the samples himself and the WADA tester couldn‘t provide the required certifications upon sun‘s request (which a lot of media outlets fail to mention). It‘s still very shady but he has a strong juristical leg to stand in this case. If the right paperwork had been presented to Sun‘s party, he would have been banned long ago but that wasn‘t the case.


I agreed with you. You can not judge the person with his persnality and his aggressive. I believe Sun has the confidence to win the hearing so that he asked for the opening the court to peopeoles.


Thank you

CT Swim Fan

There is a capsule in Swimming World of this whole incident, which if accurate, leave me wondering how he was not given a ban for a missed drug test. He may not have wielded the hammer, but he sure did participate in the breaking of the blood vials. As far as credentials, there apparently are areas on the forms provided for an athlete to object to testers they do not believe are proper, but he did not avail himself of this avenue. He seemed to be getting bad advise from mama and his doctor. Not sure why his hearing could not have been held in Korea or before, as the incidents and decisions in question happened in September 2018, January… Read more »

South of the Border

Good – then you’ve bought what Craig wanted you to think hook-line-and-sinker. SS’s coverage was much more fair. The testers apparently did not present proper credentials – this happened once before in 2017, and the testing company didn’t fix the problem a year later. The testers were also sneakily filming Sun before he smashed the vile. Tell me: why would legitimate drug testers NOT have their credentials with them and be sneakily FILMING the individual who they are drug testing? I say all of this with the caveat that I don’t believe that Sun needed the TMZ for his ‘heart’ and if he tested positive I wouldn’t be surprised. But the facts in this case that everyone seems to be… Read more »

Benedict Arnold Schwarzenegger

Craig Lord cares a lot less about the truth then he does about looking like some hardline anti-doping hero. Not a great trait in a journalist.


Finally see someone caring more about facts instead of presumption.


All of this should have been dealt with before Worlds – the delay is very WADA /FINA and that is also a problem.


Brilliantly stated CT SWIM FAN!!!


Steve, among the astonishing points of the FINA doping panel’s report, were witness claims that “Sun’s mother asked a security guard to bring a hammer into the doping control room”.


nonsense! If he is innocent, which has obviously proven by this World Cup anti-doping agency, aren’t these terrible disrespectful actions launched by Horton and Scott an international bully?


Yes, you are right on the spot….

Carlos Almeida

He’s already been caught once and only got 3 months. He shouldn’t be allowed to swim since then.


The substance he took is already off the list. It was not serious at all


It’s still banned


It’s insane to think it wasn’t serious. Dopers and nations that dope are constantly looking for PED’s that aren’t on the banned list. They get their athletes on them and then when a lot of people start having the substance popping up in their system WADA looks into it and usually bans it.

It’s amazing how many world class Chinese and Russian athletes “have a heart condition” at 22 that forces them to cycle a serious pharmaceutical drugs…read between the lines.

Mark Spitz

And it is so easy to beat the tests. Give me a break He’s a CHEATER!!!! CHEATER…CHEATER!!! No one has seen Icarus?!?! CHEATERS gonna cheat. Swimming is going the way of cycling.

Christopher Thomas

It’s also amazing how many American athletes have heart conditions too 😉 don’t be one sided

13 % Chinese person

The West has Asthma . I think in the future both may be proved right , that extreme exercise is damaging to heart systems & breathing systems . Can we have a truce there?


It also amazed me when fancy bear found so many western athletes using drugs under TUE at their 20s.

Luther Jones

Looking in from the outside can you demonstrate how he disrespects other athletes and the sport of swimming?


Like scot and Horton gave the respect to the champion at first. You seem like an NBA referee who always missed the aggressor and caught the responder. Yeah, it goes both ways.


The ruling might be in his favor, but there’s no way it will “prove him innocent.”


Yeah, let’s try him by public opinion. FINA is wrong because they do not ban Sun when there is an allegation. Facts are not relevant.


Sun’s taunting was wrong. But do people think it’s appropriate to snub him based on unproved suspicions? Is the idea that it’s only because of a procedural technicality that he’s been cleared to swim? If you think he’s only cleared to swim because of corruption, it seems your protest should be aimed at the governing body you think is corrupt.

Coach John

2014 – proved
2015 – proved
2019 – smashed a blood vile (proven)
what are you claiming is unproven


Pure fact seeking. Could you please provide a link to the 2015 case you listed? I searched wikipedia and Google and did not find it. Maybe just missed it.


he is just making it up


At the 2015 World Championships, Sun won gold medals in the 400 metre and 800 metre freestyle, as well as a silver medal in the 200 metre freestyle. Before the 1500m freestyle final, Chinese swim team officials were allegedly tip-off that Sun was going to be drug tested after 1500 metre freestyle final. Sun mysteriously withdrew from the final, later citing heart problems during his warm-up and he and the Chinese swim team without warning left the Championships. Also note Sun was barred from competitive swimming events in 2015, after it was discovered that he was driving without a driver’s license following an accident he was involved in. He later made a public apology, stating that he “should have been… Read more »


Brilliantly stated COACH JOHN!!!


Agree. This is a lot more logical discussion.

Jay Ryan

Innocent of what? Destroying his sample so that it could not be tested? I thought the facts on this were clear. If so this is a doping violation. Does Sun contend that his sample was never destroyed…or that it was broken by mistake (then a repeat sample was refused)? The problem is that his punishment was not firmly levied by FINA, rather FINA acceded to the notion that the CAS can adjudicate this issue. This is the “FINA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS”, not the “CAS World Championships”. Level the suspension properly within your jurisdiction. That will avoid the protests. Unless FINA officials grow a pair, the protests are gonna happen. Cheaters are cheaters.


Please remember, that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) have appealed the findings of the FINA doping panel’s report, dated January 3, that decided Sun did not commit a doping violation. WADA are alleging that Sun Yang has!!!


comment image


BRILLIANT simply brilliant!


I agree, this is the essence of competition game, emotion control is about personal politeness and competition rule itself should be respected.


smashing samples to avoid testing, is that what you call innocent?

Peaty the Potato

OK even if he’s innocent that you’re a winner I’m a loser comment is like 5 year old chat.

Peaty the Potato

Duncan for 2020 200m Gold


Hah! Sun all the way


no chance. mack horton would win in the first place. he is second


Yes, indeed. But I still understand why he would say that after being treated unrespectfully.

Sun Ying Yang Twins



Upvote for the name alone.


I cant hear any comment that Sun Yang made. What I hear is Rowdy interpretation of gestures. Sun Yang speaks little English and probably speaks even less English when he is angry.

Coach John

I doubt Scott speaks Mandarin or Cantonese….

The Ready Room

Nah, he said it. There’s another clip from Twitter in the initial article about the incident where you can hear him clearly.


Videos on Twitter can be altered and fake. Easy enough to alter the audio of the video and post on Twitter.


This isn’t a big enough deal for that to have happened. Do you also believe in Bigfoot?


I was watching it live on the CBC broadcast with the Australian commentators and you could hear him say “you’re a loser, I’m the winner yes?” as clear as the commentary itself


Well I couldn’t hear anything but the fact is Sun’s statement is correct.


Aussie has commentators? To whom? I thought they couldn’t get live broadcasting. Youtuber?


Sure it is a big deal and people do alter videos on twitter all the time


You’re so stupid. I can’t even 😂

Texas Tap Water

Did you not watch how he was on the podium?


Aussie can’t watch live In their country…Haha.


Yes. Watching on FINA TV or the iswim app now. Saw it live


Front page of The Guardian, full video.


You are talking like Horton/Duncan’s behaviors are real adult…


They were making a stand that many many swimmers agree with. Search through twitter and you’ll find it. This is their sport. FINA make a fortune from them.


Yes it’s Anglo-Saxon sport.
Sun, an Asian who dominated free swim for a decade, should be banned forever due to Anglo-Saxon opinions.

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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