FINA Boss: Horton's Protest 'More A Personal Issue Than A Doping Issue'
FINA executive director Cornel Marculescu says the governing body is dealing with another two positive drug tests beside Australian Shayna Jack's.
FINA boss Cornel Marculescu has suggested Mack Horton's issue with Sun Yang is "probably more a personal issue than a doping issue".
The executive director of swimming' s governing body was sceptical about Horton's podium protest against Sun when he addressed reporters on the final day of the world championships in South Korea.
"It's more, 'You beat me, I must beat you somehow,'" Marculescu said, adding that the swimmers may now be regretting their actions.
"Sometimes we make mistakes."
Silver medallist Horton sparked a week of acrimony when he refused to share the podium with Sun after the Chinese star won the 400m freestyle gold medal, later getting an ovation from fellow swimmers at the athletes' village.
FINA's doping panel cleared triple Olympic champion Sun of a doping offence in January but the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is appealing the case at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in September.
Horton was reportedly frustrated that Sun, who also served a three-month suspension for doping in 2014, was allowed to compete in those circumstances.
"The doping panel is a totally independent body. They decided, you've seen the decision and reasons," said Marculescu.
"Whatever CAS decides we need to accept."
British swimmer Duncan Scott later backed Horton by shunning Sun on the podium after the 200m freestyle.
The protests were "unfortunate" and the incidents had brought the sport "into disrepute", said Marculescu.
He warned swimmers could be stripped of their medals for similar serious deviations from FINA regulations in the future as it was "part of the sanction".
The Romanian also told reporters that it was FINA's policy to not discuss ongoing doping cases until a decision had been reached and said the "super-transparent" governing body was at the forefront of the anti-doping fight.
Marculescu's comments came in the wake of Australian swimmer Shayna Jack's admission that she had tested positive for a banned substance late last month.
Marculescu said FINA did not comment on Jack's positive test because the final decision had not been reached. He also said Jack was "... not the only one, there are another two. But we need to finish the case."
Marculescu said the other two cases were not Australian athletes but he gave no further details and did not specify whether they were related to the world championships.
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