The 2016 Olympic Games have certainly been full of drama, and now in another instalment, Australian runner Eloise Wellings has suggested Ethiopian athlete Almaz Ayana may be part of a doping scandal.
“It’s really hard at the moment, there is a lot of talk about doping, I mean the Ethiopian coach being caught with a whole lot of EPO in his hotel room and Ethiopian athletes in the same hotel,” Wellings said from Rio, the Herald Sun reports.
Competing against Anaya in the 5000m heat earlier this week, Wellings said running next to her rival was like “running next to someone who is hardly breathing and then she just went off,” adding, “I can’t say for sure so I’m not going to say anything, we just have to focus on what we are doing.”
Eloise Wellings (left) with Australian teammate Genevieve Lacaze. Source: Getty Images.
Earlier in the week Ayana shaved an incredible 14 seconds off the 10,000m world record, which had been held by China's Wang Junxi for 23 years.
Wellings, who placed 10th in the same race said, “No one has ever seen anything like it," continuing, “I don’t know if it is for real, I don’t know if she’s been getting some extra help."
Almaz Ayana after breaking the world record. Source: Getty Images.
Unwilling to make steadfast claims against the runner, Wellings conceded, “I look at her and I think what a beautiful runner, she has a stunning technique, a stunning style and hopefully we can close the gap.”
Wellings will compete in her final event for Australia this weekend, taking part in the women's 5000 metre final alongside fellow Aussies Genevieve LaCaze and Madeline Heiner-Hills.
Ayana has not responded to the allegations.