"I want to hear that the level has dropped": Russian Olympic champion complains that Russians are "not welcome in the international arena"
The absence of Russian athletes does not affect the competition and results of various tournaments, and their level remains very high. At the same time, the competitors of the Russian Federation feel at ease and continue to make progress, and they are not particularly looking forward to the return of athletes from the aggressor country.
Olympic short track champion Semyon Yelistratov expressed his confidence in this in a commentary to the Metaratings portal. The 33-year-old native of Ufa, who won gold in Sochi 2014 and was caught using meldonium and banned for four months, added that he was closely following the competition.
"Many people want to hear that the level has dropped. I will speak specifically about short track (I don't know about other types): we are not expected on the international stage. And I wouldn't say that the level of results has dropped. Again, this is only in our sport. Because I have not heard any athlete in our sport say the following: "There are not enough Russian athletes, without Russians the competition would be higher." Have you heard foreign athletes say that they miss Russian athletes? I haven't heard it in my sport," Yelistratov said.
Earlier, fencer Sofia Velikaya refused to participate in the 2024 Olympic Games. For their part, the leaders of the Russian rhythmic gymnastics team, Dina and Arina Averina, with the words "we don't really want to" confirmed that they will not perform in Paris.
As OBOZ.UA previously reported, the president of the All-Russian Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation (ARGF) Irina Viner forbade athletes to "die and talk with hope" about being admitted to the 2024 Olympics.