Chinese Federation Falsifying Ages?

Update February 15th: The document on the Chinese website has been pulled down and the Chinese Federation says it will investigate the ages of their skaters.  Full story at http://www.universalsports.com/news/article/newsid=517798.html#china+says+will+investigate+discrepancies?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

The Chinese Federation has released a statement saying poor record keeping is to blame for the discrepencies and the birthdates given to the ISU are accurate.  This statement only seems to be related to the Zhangs and does not address any of the other athletes in question. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FIG_SKATERS_AGE_DISCREPANCIES?SITE=MIDTN&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Icenetwork has also posted a story about age issues at Four Continents.  http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110215&content_id=16637068&vkey=ice_news

Update February 14th: Here’s a link to a New York Times Article on the topic: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2011/02/14/sports/AP-FIG-Skaters-Age-Discrepancies.html?_r=2&ref=sports

Other skaters under investigation are the Zhangs, Yu Gao, Bingwa Geng, Binshu Xu, and Yu/Jin.  Both Sui/Han and Yu/Jin are scheduled to compete at Junior Worlds at the end of the month and both may be ineligble.

The ISU has asked the Chinese Federation to provide additional information.


There have been some documents floating around various figure skating boards that indicate that the Chinese Federation might be falsifying the ages of their athletes.

This document is supposedly from the Chinese Olympic Committee Website: http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=zh-CN&u=http://images.sport.org.cn/File/2010/08/11/1427415048.doc&ei=JPgsTe3GC4nAsAOKnNTGBg&sa=X&oi=translate&ct=result&resnum=4&sqi=2&ved=0CDAQ7gEwAw&prev=/search%3Fq%3D%25E5%25BC%25A0%25E9%2593%25AD%25E6%25B4%258B/%25E8%25A7%25A3%25E4%25BC%2597%25E5%2593%2588%26hl%3Den%26prmd%3Divns

According to this document, Wenjing Sui is actually 13 (not 15 as her ISU age indicates and ineligible to compete internationally at the senior level) and Cong Han is actually 21( not 18 as his ISU age indicates).  There is some indication that this document might be fake as Sui’s “original” birthdate is listed as May but her “new” birthday is listed as July.  She is 16 days too young to enter Senior Worlds this season.  If the Federation were to fake the year of her birth, why change the month to later and keep the team out of senior worlds?  They could have simply moved the year up by two and left the month alone.

The Federation has been caught for cheating this season.Kexin Zhang was originally entered into Four Continents, but is not old enough according to her ISU birth date and has since been removed from the roster.

These allegations can be extremely difficult to prove as the ISU uses the birthdate on the passport to verify age and if the ISU listed date and the passport match than the age is considered to be correct.

Comments

  1. “If the Federation were to fake the year of her birth, why change the month to later and keep the team out of senior worlds?”

    Perhaps because it’s less likely to arouse discussion about her. Having her compete at senior Worlds two years early would be a bit harder to pull off without people starting to talk.