Evgeny Rylov, gold-medal swimmer, banned for being at pro-Putin rally

nikholas

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – Russian Olympic gold medalist swimmer Evgeny Rylov has been banned from the sport for nine months for appearing at a rally in support of President Vladimir Putin and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Rylov stood on stage with medalists from other Olympic sports at the event last month […]

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – Russian Olympic gold medalist swimmer Evgeny Rylov has been banned from the sport for nine months for appearing at a rally in support of President Vladimir Putin and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Rylov stood on stage with medalists from other Olympic sports at the event last month and wore a jacket with a “Z” on the chest. The letter isn’t part of the Russian alphabet but has become a symbol of support for Russian troops after it was used as a marker on Russian armored vehicles operating in Ukraine.

A brief statement from swimming’s world governing body, FINA, on Thursday said it “acknowledged” an earlier, as yet unpublished ruling from a disciplinary panel to ban Rylov “following Mr. Rylov’s attendance and conduct at an event held at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.”

Rylov was the star of Russia’s swim team at the Olympics in Tokyo last year with two gold medals.

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