Polish Olympic weightlifter denies drug use
PR dla Zagranicy
Two-time Olympic weightlifting silver medalist, Szymon Kołecki, has denied using performance-enhancing drugs.
The comments came after an article in daily Gazeta Wyborcza said that Kołecki had used banned anabolic steroid Retabolil in 2002 while undergoing therapy for a spinal injury in Odessa, Ukraine.
Kołecki has vehemently denied using banned substances, releasing a statement on Monday saying that: “I am deeply convinced that the drugs which I used, were not on the banned list.”
Gazeta Wyborcza’s article interviewed the Ukrainian doctor who treated Kołecki in 2002, who said that the weightlifter’s health “was in such a state, that without the medicine he would have been disabled sooner or later”.
The daily said that Kołecki had been caught using banned substances a total of three times, in 1996, 2002 and 2004. Gazeta Wyborcza added that Kołecki’s absence at the 2002 world championships in Warsaw was not due to injury, but another case of drug use.
The daily interviewed the former chairman of the Polish Weightlifting Federation (PZPC), Zygmunt Wasiel, who explained that the then-board of PZPC made a “deal” to exclude Kołecki from the tournament so that Warsaw would retain the rights to organise the championships.
Szymon Kołecki won silver medals in the 94-kg weightlifting category in the 1999 and 2006 Olympics. He retired in 2012, and is the current head of PZPC. (rg)