The Court of Arbitration for Sport on Thursday dismissed a Russian appeal against a ban imposed by athletics governing body the IAAF over state-run doping, barring the country’s track and field team from the Rio Games. “The CAS Panel has confirmed the validity of the IAAF’s decision to apply Rules ... which state that athletes whose national federation is suspended by the IAAF are ineligible for competitions held under the IAAF Rules,” a statement from the Lausanne based court said. Zero tolerance: China stipulates no drug pledge and written tests for Olympic Games-bound athletes The International Olympic Committee had said the CAS ruling will help shape its decision on whether to ban Russia entirely from the Rio Games. Athletics’ governing body welcomed CAS’s rejection of Russia’s appeal, declaring Thursday’s ruling “has created a level playing field for athletes”. The Court of Arbitration for Sport’s verdict barred 67 Russian athletes from competing at the Olympic Games starting on August 5. “The CAS award upholds the rights of the IAAF to use its rules for the protection of the sport, to protect clean athletes and support the credibility and integrity of competition,” the IAAF statement read. IAAF president Sebastian Coe cautioned that while he welcomed the verdict, “this is not a day for triumphant statements”.