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2 Russian cross-country skiers banned for doping

MOSCOW (AP) — Two Russian cross-country skiers have been banned for doping, the latest blow to a sport already struggling with a drug problem. The Russian anti-doping agency says that Yegor Beryozin and Vasily Pushkin each received four-year bans starting last month after testing positive for unspecified substances.

Both were regulars in the Eastern Europe Cup who had struggled to establish themselves at international level, though Beryozin won two medals at the World University Games in 2017. The bans come as cross-country reels from the arrests of five skiers at the world championships in Austria last month. The five — two Austrians, two Estonians and a Kazakh — are suspected of blood doping with a German doctor, along with two Austrian cyclists who competed in the Tour de France.

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