By Duncan Mackay

WADA Athlete chair Beckie Scott has backed the investigation into allegations of systematic doping in Russia ©WADAWorld Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Athlete chair Beckie Scott has described allegations that Russia has been involved in a systematic doping programme as "deeply troubling".

The Canadian, an Olympic gold medallist at Salt Lake City in the 2x5 kilometre pursuit, has offered her "strong support" after WADA promised to launch an investigation into the allegations broadcast on German television earlier this month. 

"As chair of the body which represents the interests of clean athletes, I know I express the feelings of the overwhelming majority of athletes worldwide in saying how very disappointed I was to learn of the allegations, which pose a serious threat to the integrity and fairness of sport," said Scott. 

"These allegations - which disturbingly range from systematic doping to bribery and corruption - are deeply troubling to the athlete community worldwide, not to mention the wider public, all of whom seek to retain their full confidence in clean sport, competed on a level playing field.

"It is vital that the rights of the clean athlete continue to be protected, and that clean, fair sport is allowed to prosper."

Russia's London 2012 Olympic 800 metres champion Mariya Sarinova is among those to have been implicated by the German documentary ©Getty ImagesRussia's London 2012 Olympic 800 metres champion Mariya Sarinova is among those to have been implicated by the German documentary ©Getty Images

Hajo Seppelt, the journalist behind the three documentaries for ZDF/ARD which alleged systemic doping and a cover-up involving International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) officials,claimed the programmes, which accused London 2012 Olympic 800 metres champion Mariya Sarinova as being among those that used drugs, had led others to come forward with evidence.

"We did not plan a sequel, however, people are sending us more and more evidence to back the claim there is systematic doping in Russian sport," Seppelt told the Russian website today.

"Therefore, I do not want to categorically rule out such a move.

"If it is needed, we will film a second part."

Scott has backed WADA, which is led by Britain's Sir Craig Reedie, to help get to the bottom of the controversy. 

"I am confident that WADA's decision to undertake a full investigation will bring us one step closer to the clean athlete's fundamental right to participate in doping-free sport, and that once that investigation is complete, the appropriate actions will follow in line with the rules of the [World Anti-Doping] Code," she said.

"As we enter this new chapter of anti-doping, I believe I speak for clean athletes worldwide in encouraging all organisations - whether they be sports federations, event organisations or anti-doping organisations - to implement the 2015 Code as quickly and effectively as possible.

"All of the main changes - stronger sanctions, rules that cover the athlete entourage, smarter testing - will help us keep sport clean."

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