Russian Olympic Committee: Why is Russia called ROC at Tokyo Olympics?

A flag of the Republic of China featuring the main colors of the Russian flag (Image: TASS via Getty Images)

If you are this year’s eagle eye viewer Olympic and wondered in which country I could read the ROC.

ROC is likely to appear hundreds of times over the course of the next two weeks on your TV screen, and you’ll probably rack your brains over what country that abbreviation represents.

Well, look no further.

What does the Republic of China represent at the Olympics?

ROC stands for Russian Olympic Committee.

At the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, there will be 335 athletes from Russia who will compete under the Olympic flag rather than represent a Russian nation.

Russia’s National Olympic Committee has been banned which means you won’t see Russia’s flag or anthem played if its athletes win gold medals.

Why ROC? Explaining Russia’s Olympic ban

Russia was banned from all major sporting events by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) in 2019.

Russia’s Anti-Doping Agency (Rusada) was declared non-compliant for manipulating laboratory data delivered to investigators in January 2019.

It had to hand over data to Wada as a condition of controversial reinstatement in 2018 after a three-year suspension over a massive state-sponsored doping scandal.

Russia will not compete under their flag or anthem at Tokyo 2020 (Image: Masashi Hara / Getty Images)

WADA originally banned Russia from the world’s top sporting events for four years in December 2019, but the duration of the sanctions was halved to two years after an appeal last year.

As a result, Russia will not be able to compete at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

Russia has also been banned from competing as a country in athletics since 2015

However, athletes who can demonstrate they are not affected by the doping scandal will be able to compete under the neutral flag.

The IOC previously said: ‘All public displays of the organization’s participant names must use the acronym ‘ROC’, not the full name ‘Russian Olympic Committee’.

The logo of the Russian Olympic Committee consists of three flames in the colors of the Russian national flag with the Olympic rings below them.

The gold medalists will have a piece by Russian composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky played in place of the Russian national anthem.

Russian athletes and women must compete internationally under a neutral flag until the ban ends on December 16, 2022.

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