WITH five months to go until the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, TT sprinter Michelle Lee Ahye may be able to represent this country if an appeal filed by the TT Olympic Committee (TTOC) is successful.
The Commonwealth Games gold-medallist received a two-year ban by the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federation) on January 25 for “whereabouts failure” – a violation of its anti-doping rules – after missing three drug tests over a 12-month period.
She missed tests on June 23, 2018, February 23, 2019 and April 19, 2019. She claimed she was unable to hear knocks on her door and the ringing of her apartment’s doorbell for the final test which led to her penalisation.
But the TTOC has now filed an appeal against the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland.
TTOC attorney Dave Williams told Newsday that after being informed of the IAAF’s decision, the TTOC had 30 days to challenge it.
The appeal was filed on Friday.
The committee now has 15 days to submit its arguments against the decision.
Williams said, “We aren’t going into details but certainly we’re challenging the number of years given to her.
“If we can get at least one year taken away from it, that’s fine.”
But he says the aim is to reverse the ban entirely.
He is seeking an expedited hearing because “if CAS treats with it as they normally (deal with) matters, it may not be heard in time.”
Asked how the athlete has been doing, he said, “There’s not much we can do. She’s operating like normal.
“I can’t really comment in terms of her mental state but as far as I’m aware, she’s taking it as it comes.”