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Suzu Chiba To Go Before CAS

Aug 1, 2000  - Sumire Watanabe

The hearing of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Suzu Chiba's appeal begins on Aug 3 in Tokyo.

Chiba is a two times Olympian and the national record holder of 100m (54.99) & 200m (1:58.78) freestyle.

At the Japanese Olympic Trials in April, despite severe illness Chiba won the 200 free in 2:00.54, half a second under the FINA Olympic Standard. But she was left off the Japanese Olympic Team.

At the post selection press conference, the Japanese Amateur Swimming Federation said that they chose only those they felt were potential medallist for the team in Sydney. Therefore it was not enough for swimmers to qualify the standard and win the race.

They refused to explain why they didn't choose Chiba. In addition, it was beyond comprehension that while they chose some swimmers who hardly had a chance to medal, they cut off the men's breaststroker Yoshiaki Okita, who was second in 200 with a time of 2:13.90.

Chiba appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport is that the criteria was not announced before the meet began, therefore she should be selected to the Olympic team based on her performances.

This is the first case by Japanese athlete to take a case before the CAS.

She hopes that JASF will make its selection of swimmers clearer in the future so that others will not have to go through the appeal process in the future.