Chinese swim star denies doping
Ye Shiwen, centre, denies taking performance-enhancing drugs
Chinese swimming sensation Ye Shiwen has firmly denied taking performance-enhancing drugs.
The 16-year-old was speaking at a press conference hours after adding the Olympic 200m individual medley title to the gold she won in the 400m version. Critics expressed concern after she took five seconds off her personal best and more than a second off the world record in the 400m individual medley.
But when asked if she had used doping to improve her performance, she bluntly replied: "Absolutely not."
During Tuesday night's press conference, which was dominated by questions on doping, she claimed the criticism was undeserved.
She said: "I think this is a little bit unfair for me, however I was not affected by that. I'm not affected by the outside noise."
She agreed with the analysis of Jiang Zhixue, who leads anti-doping work at China's General Administration of Sport, who said the critics were biased.
"I also feel the same way, they are biased," she said. "I think that in other countries other swimmers have won multiple golds and no-one has said anything. How come people criticise me just because I have multiple medals?"
American coach John Leonard described Ye's first gold medal performance as "disturbing" and "unbelievable". But the Olympics' world body said drugs cheats at London 2012 would be caught and athletes who put in world record-breaking performances should be given the benefit of the doubt.
The International Olympics Committee (IOC) said critics concerned about Ye should "get real".
"These are the world's best athletes competing at the very highest level," IOC communications director Mark Adams said. "We have seen all sorts of records broken already all over the place."