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Sports

Nigeria's women's bobsled team has qualified for the 2018 Winter Olympics.

The three-member team — which was only formed in 2016 — is the first to represent Nigeria at the winter event, to be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in February next year.

Driver Seun Adigun, brakemen Ngozi Onwumere and Akuoma Omega, qualified for the event over five races held in Utah, Whistler and Calgary.

In 2012, Adigun competed in the women's 100 metre hurdles at the summer Olympics.

She told ESPN that the qualification is a "huge milestone for sports in Nigeria".

Adigun hopes that the bobsled team will help create opportunities for winter sports to take place in Nigeria. abc.net.au
Russia is a step closer to facing a possible ban of its athletes from the Winter Olympics in South Korea after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) upheld its decision that the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) remains non-compliant.

Russia's anti-doping agency was initially deemed non-compliant after the 2016 publication of the McLaren report, commissioned by WADA, which found the Russian state conspired with athletes and sporting officials to undertake a doping program that was unprecedented in its scale and ambition – Russia's ministry for sport has repeatedly denied the report's findings.

In order to regain compliance, RUSADA had to follow a 32-point "roadmap."

However, WADA said Thursday it had failed to meet two of those conditions: to acknowledge an existence of a Russian state-sponsored doping program and to provide WADA access officers to a Moscow laboratory.

RUSADA director-general Yuri Ganus said the result "wasn't a surprise" but insisted that his team had "carried out the road map step by step, tracking each stage," and that the two unfulfilled points "go beyond our authority."

WADA President Craig Reedie said that any decision on whether Russian athletes will compete at Pyeongchang would come from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) – the IOC's decision is expected to make its decision at an executive board meeting next month in Lausanne, Switzerland. cnn.com
An Iranian weightlifter has put his Rio 2016 gold medal up for auction to raise money for the victims of last week's deadly 7.3-magnitude earthquake near the Iran-Iraq border.

Kianoush Rostami, 26, announced the news on his Instagram page.

More than 400 people were killed and close to 10,000 injured in the quake.

The western Kermanshah province is the worst-affected area, with hundreds of homes destroyed and some residents sleeping outdoors in the cold.

Mr Rostami, himself from Kermanshah, said he was "taking a step, however small" to help those devastated by the tremor.

"I am returning my Rio 2016 Olympics gold medal - which actually belongs to them - to my people," he wrote in a widely-shared Instagram post yesterday, adding that he had not slept since the incident. bbc.com
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