FINA Won’t ‘Consider Further Speculation and Hearsay’ About Sun Yang

FINA, the international governing body of swimming, issued a statement Monday following the swimming world’s intense reaction to The Sunday Times’ report that a vial of Chinese star Sun Yang’s blood was intentionally destroyed during an out-of-competition drug test last September.

FINA is aware of the reports in the Sunday Times and other media outlets regarding Chinese swimmer Sun Yang. In accordance with FINA‘s Anti-Doping Policy (FINA DC Rules 14.1.5 and 14.3.3) and the decision of the Doping Panel, FINA is not authorised to comment the case. Moreover, FINA will not consider further speculation and hearsay on this matter.

FINA has zero tolerance for the use of banned performance-enhancing substances and methods. FINA remains completely committed to protecting our clean athletes, with a very robust anti-doping programme, and this has proven highly effective in ensuring clean competition at the World Championships and Olympic Games. FINA continued to implement this intensive approach in Hangzhou, China, during the 14th FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) 2018 and will do so again in the future, to preserve the integrity of our sport.

The Sunday Times story alleges that Sun’s mother, after he broke a number of testing protocols, ordered security guards to destroy a vial of his blood taken in a nearby clubhouse, according to witnesses. Dr. Ba Zhen, who supports Sun (and who like Sun has a history with doping), reportedly contacted Dr. Han Zhaoqi, the head of the Zhejiang Anti-Doping Center. Han told FINA that the nurse present didn’t have the necessary paperwork, and at a January 3rd hearing, the FINA panel ruled in Sun’s favor, stating that they would “never know” what had happened.

The World Anti-Doping Association, however, has been claimed to be ‘furious’ over the ruling, and are considering an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. According to WADA rules, WADA has 21 days following “the last day on which any other party in the case could have appealed” or 21 days “after WADA’s receipt of the complete file relating to the decision.” With athletes or national anti-doping organizations themselves having a 21-day appeal period, that would give WADA until February 14th to appeal the decision of the FINA panel.

Sun’s lawyer Zhang Qihuai issued a statement to Xinhua Sunday threatening to sue The Sunday Times over defamation: “We reserve the right to file a lawsuit against the relevant international media which reports the incident,” the statement read.  It also accused The Times of reporting the news with a “malign intention” and “dubious motives,” and “infringing upon Sun’s privacy and reputation.”

The Chinese Swimming Assocation additionally issued a statement backing Sun’s camp on the claims of defamation.

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“FINA has zero tolerance for the use of banned performance-enhancing substances and methods”



I was literally typing this


The 3 down votes must be FINA board members or drug abusing athletes.


Now 4. LOL.

mike in dallas

OR the central committee of the People’s Republic of . . . . . ,


lmao CHINA

Ol' Longhorn

Like how you worked that “g” in there.


fInA hAs ZeRo ToLeRaNcE


XD zero tolerance? what zero tolerance?

Sir Swimsalot

“Zero tolerance.” Yeah right. Efimova for one now this. I’m sure there have been more.

Old Man Chalmers

efimova – you mean most if not all russian athletes?

Cheatin Vlad

I have forgiven and moved on with Yuliya. She’s been clean a few years now and has a good Instagram feed. 🙂


“Clean for years” is a joke. You think the effects on your body from these drugs just goes away? Once a drug cheat, always a drug cheat.


I’m not claiming to know anything about governing a sport, but I feel like FINA needs some new administration.

Caeleb Dressel’s Bandana



Screw FINA.
Go retroactively test some 2008, 2012 and 2016 samples like other sports. Announce you’re doing it and see what happens. If everyone is clean then amazing, increased credibility. If you catch a few from the retro active samples then even more amazing; you’ve increased credibility and handed out some justice. Until then, don’t talk.

Steve – samples for all sports from 2008, 2012, and 2016 Olympic Games are being retroactively tested. They’re not being tested on a sport-by-sport basis, that re-testing program is being run by the IOC. Just happens that all of the retests that are coming back positive are concentrated in a few sports.

Cheatin Vlad

Well, you are in rare company in these parts then if you don’t have an answer to governing swimming. 🙂

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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