South African Athletics

IPC to do Oscar no favours

2014-09-17 21:09
Oscar Pistorius (File)

London - As Oscar Pistorius awaits sentencing for the culpable homicide of Reeva Steenkamp, it's uncertain if the fallen sports icon will ever race again.

What's clearer is that the Paralympic leadership will not be encouraging any comeback by the double amputee sprinter.

Next month, Pistorius could be handed anything from a suspended sentence and a fine to as much as 15 years in prison.

Should Pistorius subsequently be in a position to compete, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) would be powerless to stop him from returning to the track if he achieves a qualifying time.

"If that athlete was entered and had gained the qualification we would not be a legal situation where we could deny that athlete the right to compete," IPC President Philip Craven said.

But he added: "There has never been any intention to promote any reinstatement of any sort."

The Pistorius case has presented Craven with some of the most challenging moments of his 13-year tenure.

 For so long, Pistorius was the poster boy of the Paralympic movement, generating huge interest around the 2012 London Games when Pistorius, affectionately known as the "Blade Runner", became the first double-amputee sprinter to compete at the Olympics.

He then ran at the Paralympics, winning gold in the 400 metres and the 4x100m relay.

But on Valentine's Day in 2013, Pistorius opened fire in his home after hearing what he said sounded like an intruder in a bathroom in the middle of the night, killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.

"I was in a state of shock for two days then we realised we had to come out of that rapidly," Craven said.

"Of course he was a great athlete but what took place 18 months ago was not anything to do with sport ... but it's an absolute tragedy."

On Monday, the IPC marks the 25th anniversary of its formation, although the Paralympics first took place in 1960.

Craven said the movement is not reliant on the star power of one athlete.

"There are so many great Paralympians who can promote the movement," Craven said.

"There are so many athletes doing brilliantly now we are not dependent, although we never thought we were on one athlete."

Other sprint stars have emerged, such as Alan Oliveira, who upset Pistorius by winning the 200m race at the London Paralympics.

The Brazilian will likely be competing in front of his home crowd when the games go to Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Whether Pistorius will be competing there will become clearer next month.

Read more on:    ipcc  |  oscar pistorius  |  paralympics
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
64 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured

The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
Vote

Patriotism aside, who do you feel deserved to win the 2017 Laureus Breakthrough of the Year award?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.