Sun Yang Lashes Out Following Podium Shame

By Ben Hamill - July 29 2019

sun yang

Chinese swimmer and gold medalist Sun Yang is no stranger to controversy. His recent performance following the men’s 200-metre freestyle final at the world aquatics championships in Gwangju, South Korea, albeit grossly inappropriate, would not have served to surprise too many people because shouting, “I win, I win, you lose” at a fellow competitor is exactly the kind of abhorrent and unprofessional behaviour the world has come to expect of the 27-year-old freestyler.

Various contenders in the world-class event refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of Yang’s podium finish, including British swimmer Duncan Scott. Scott became the target of Yang’s jeers and rude expressions when he followed the example of Aussie Mack Horton by refusing to shake Yang’s hand. Horton the previous day refused to shake Yang’s hand whilst on the podium following the men’s 400 metre freestyle event, during which the Chinese swimmer had won gold.

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Horton: Yang Not Fit For Podium

Horton later on explained that he did not deem Yang fit to receive a gold medal; or any other medal for that matte; given the fact that the Chinese swimmer was at the time being investigated following allegations of doping. The Aussie’s refusal to acknowledge Yang’s having placed on the podium was applauded by his fellow swimmers present in the lunchroom after the event.

But why the animosity so openly directed at the Chinese freestyler? Yang’s name has been mentioned in anti-doping circles for quite some time, but the recent behaviour by his fellow competitors is the result of an ongoing 2018 investigation following an incident during which the swimmer supposedly smashed a vial of blood before anti-doping testers could test it.

The group of testers had allegedly arrived at Yang’s house without prior warning in order to perform a random test. It however after the incident transpired that only one of the three testers were in fact accredited to perform anti-doping tests and as a result, FINA had accepted a situation of “no-outcome”, despite Yang’s worrying behaviour. WADA, however, wasn’t as easily appeased as FINA and made the call to refer the situation to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, where it is currently undergoing a process of review.

Connected To Doping Since 2014

But Yang’s recent frowned-upon stunt on the podium and afore-going brush with an anti-doping agency isn’t his first doping-related transgression. The Chinese swimmer in 2014 was made to endure a 3-month ban imposed by the Chinese Swimming Association (CSA) after he had tested positive for Trimetazidine, which substance was at the time categorised as a class of stimulants.

Its important to note that the ban was imposed by his “own” nationality, especially in light of the fact that Yang has on a previous occasion accused Aussie Mack Horton of displaying racist behaviour following the latter having accused the Chinese swimmer of being a “drug cheat” at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

It remains to be seen what the outcome of the latest review and investigation will be.

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