A Russian competing in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang is suspected of testing positive for a banned substance, jeopardizing the country's attempt to rally after its latest doping scandal.
Russian athletes participating in the Games this year are competing not under the Russian flag but in a neutral capacity.
Alexander Krushelnitsky, a bronze-medalist along with his wife in mixed-doubles curling, is suspected of having tested positive for meldonium, the source said. Meldonium increases blood flow which improves exercise capacity in athletes.
Russia has been accused of running a state-backed, systematic doping program for years, an allegation Moscow denies. As a result, its athletes are competing at Pyeongchang as neutral “Olympic Athletes from Russia” (OAR).
Last year's decision to bar Russia from competing in this year's Olympics came after it was discovered to have broken the rules surrounding banned substances.
The International Olympic Committee found that Russia systematically violated international anti-doping protocols for the purpose of gaining an unfair competitive advantage in Olympic sporting events.
The Committee also ruled that some Russian athletes would be permitted to participate in the 2018 olympics as long as they could demonstrate that they're 'clean'. However, even Russian athletes able to compete would be unable to do so under the Russian flag; they would be forced to compete under a neutral flag.
The good news in the Krushelnitsky situation is that IOC protocols employed at this years games are working:
“On the one hand it is extremely disappointing when prohibited substances might have been used, but on the other hand it shows the effectiveness of the anti-doping system at the Games which protects the rights of all the clean athletes,” an IOC spokesperson said.