Indian wrestler Narsingh Yadav has been ousted from Olympics as the CAS slapped him with a four-year ban, while hearing into the World Anti-Doping Agency's appeal against the clean chit given to him in a dope scandal by NADA.
Narsingh's name appeared in the official schedule released on Thursday after he underwent the regular weigh-in. He was scheduled to take on France's Zelimkhan Khadjiev in the qualification round.
"WADA filed an urgent application before the CAS ad hoc Division to challenge the decision of NADA India to exonerate Narsingh Yadav following two positive anti-doping tests with methandienone on June 25 and July 5. The athlete asserted that he was the victim of sabotage (food/drink tampering) by another person. WADA requested that a four-year period of ineligibility be imposed on the athlete," the CAS said in a statement.
"The CAS panel did not accept the argument of the athlete that he was the victim of sabotage and noted that there was no evidence that he bore no fault, nor that the anti-doping rule violation was not intentional. Therefore the standard four-year period of ineligibility was imposed by the panel," the statement added.
The embattled 74kg category grappler has maintained that his scandalous dope test was a result of conspiracy by rivals who spiked his food or drinks.
Meanwhile, conflicting reports of CAS clearing Narsingh emerged as counsels from both sides were unofficially briefing the media. The official statement put it to rest.
Having grabbed the quota by virtue of his bronze in Las Vegas 2015, Narsingh's road to Rio was fraught with obstacles after he was named to represent India ahead of double Olympic-medallist Sushil Kumar.
Sushil dragged Narsingh to Delhi High Court and a bitter courtroom tussle followed but the judgement went in latter's favour.
There was more drama in store for the Asian Games bronze-medallist after he returned positive for a banned steroid following a dope test in June by the NADA.
Narsingh's roommate at the SAI centre in Sonipat also tested positive for the same substance but WFI backed the Mumbai-based wrestler's claims of a foul-play.
Days before the Olympics, Narsingh was cleared of doping charges by the NADA who said the wrestler was indeed a victim of 'sabotage' and deserved the benefit of doubt.
However, his hopes were dealt a massive blow when WADA challenged the NADA's decision and moved the CAS amid speculation that the wrestler may face a ban up to four years.