The Court of Arbitration of Sport announced on Friday that it was reducing the ban of Christian Coleman, the reigning 100-meter world champion who last year was banned for two years for three whereabouts failures by the Athletics Integrity Unit.
Unfortunately for Coleman, his ban was reduced from 24 months to 18, which means he will still miss this summer’s Olympics in Tokyo. Coleman, 25, will be eligible to compete again on November 14, 2021.
Had the CAS panel overturned Coleman’s ban, he would have been the heavy favorite to take gold in the men’s 100 meters, the marquee event of the track & field program at the Olympic Games.
Coleman earned the silver medal at the 2017 Worlds in London and gold at the 2019 Worlds in Doha, where he ran 9.76 seconds to become the sixth-fastest man in history.
Now Coleman will have to wait until 2024 for his shot at Olympic glory — though he will be eligible to compete at the 2022 World Championships in Eugene, Ore., in which Coleman receives a bye as defending champion.
The CAS decision brings an end to a saga that kicked off in June 2020, when Coleman announced on Twitter that he was facing a provisional two-year suspension for missing his third drug test in a 12-month period (all athletes in the World Athletics Registered Testing Pool must provide a one-hour window every day in which they are available for testing). Coleman appealed that provisional suspension to a World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal, but the tribunal upheld the ban in October.