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Nov 11, 2015 9:12 PM

Isinbayeva's coach appeals for Olympic place

The Associated Press

MOSCOW (AP) With Russia's track and field team facing exclusion from next year's Olympics, the coach of pole vault great Yelena Isinbayeva says banning the entire team would unjustly punish clean athletes.

The sport's governing body is scheduled to decide Friday whether to suspend Russia, the first step toward preventing the country from competing on the track at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Evgeny Trofimov, Isinbayeva's longtime coach and mentor, tells The Associated Press that banning the entire Russian team would "breach the most basic law, the presumption of innocence."

Trofimov says Isinbayeva has never had any involvement with doping and "athletes who are clean should not suffer."

Trofimov also says Isinbayeva, who last competed in 2013, is in good shape and could break her own world record next year.

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