By Duncan Mackay
British Sports Internet Writer of the Year

July 30 - Russia were warned today by John Fahey, the President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), that they must step-up its fight against the drugs cheats if they are not to ruin the 2014 Olympics in Sochi.

Russian sport has suffered a series of doping scandals recently, including among its nordic skiers who have been threatened with a blanket four-year ban which would prevent them competing in the first-ever Winter Olympics to be staged in Russia.

Six nordic skiers from Russia have been suspended for two years for doping since 2009, including triple Olympic champion Julia Chepalova, who tested positive for the blood-booster Erythropoietin (EPO).

Fahey said: "It has a duty as the world is watching Russia prepare for that major event.

"Russia needs to expand its domestic doping control programme in order to ensure its athletes are tested out of competition and in a smart and targeted way.

"Testing needs to be conducted all around the country in an effective way."

Fahey is currently in Moscow attending an event entitled "Russia is a Sport Power" to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the 1980 Olympics held in the Russian capital and is due to meet the country's President Dmitry Medvedev to discuss the situation.

International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge has also been critical in the past of Russia's poor record on doping.

Fahey said: "Educational efforts need to be intensified in order to create a strong, stable, educated culture in which doping is forbidden altogether."

Medvedev is among those attending the conference, where more than 90 Olympic champions from 1980 are to be recognised in a special ceremony.

He is also due to attend a meeting of the Sochi 2014 Organising Committee.

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