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Berlin 2014 To Keep Steffen In The Swim

Mar 28, 2011  - Craig Lord

News Round-Up

Germany: Berlin is to host the 2014 European Championships, the German news breaking before confirmation that LEN has a host for its 2012 event. An announcement on the event to be staged in Olympic year will be made on May 14 at LEN Congress in Reykjavik, Iceland. The Berlin announcement has prompted Olympic champion Britta Steffen (GER), who races for Berlin Neukoeln, to declare herself ready to extend her career to 2014, two year beyond the defence of her Olympic crowns at London 2012. By Berlin 2014 she will be 30 - with years ahead of her, Dara Torres would doubtless say.

"I'm very happy that the European championships will be staged in Berlin," Steffen told Die Welt. "It is my hometown, and following the events of 2002 [when last Berlin staged the event], I may once again experience the uplifting feeling of battling for medals in front of a home crowd. Out of action through illness and injury last year, Steffen clocked times of 25.24 and  55.29 over 50m and 100m freestyle in Halle earlier this month.

Doping: Lubos Krizko, the male backstroke and freestyle sprinter, has heaped shame on Slovakia by testing positive for a substance developed to treat women suffering from breast cancer. FINA has announced that  Krizko tested positive fora metabolite of Tamoxifen (Class S4.2 Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators SERMs) on August 12, 2010, at the European championships in Budapest. Tamoxifen blocks the production of estrogen and is used to control the side effects of taking steroids. Krizko has been banned for two years. Perhaps he might care to tour some cancer hospices during his down time to see what the substance he took was intended for, what all the research money was intended for. He might also care to take with him the doctors, coaches and/or others who may have put him in the pathway of doping but who escape the penalty he must face. Anti-doping rules have a long journey ahead on that score.

In a separate case, FINA has fined Britain and Paraguay over the case of Benjamin Hockin (PAR), the swimmer who is serving a one-year suspension for breaking the rule governing transfer of allegiance from one country to another. Hockin raced for Britain and his new country of choice Paraguay within the same season. He may return to racing from may 23 this year. Meanwhile, FINA decided: "British Swimming Ltd. is fined an amount of US$500, representing all costs of FINA. Federación Paraguaya de Natación is fined an amount of US$1500."

Sweden: In Stockholm at the weekend, Stefan Nystrand clocked 22.44 over 50m freestyle, 2005 world 100m free champion Hanna-Maria Seppala (FIN) clocked 55.41 and in the 50m butterfly, 100m world champion Sarah Sjostrom registered a time of 25.90.