Svetlana Zhurova, Honored Master of Sports of Russia, member of the Russian Parliament, expressed her opinion about rude remarks from US rower Megan Kalmoe. Kalmoe earlier said that she was disgusted to see the success of Russian athletes at the Tokyo Olympics, because, as she believes, "they shouldn't be here."
"Seeing a crew who shouldn’t even be here walk away with a silver is a nasty feeling. Really disappointing overall and I feel for the other athletes in the A-Final. Big love to all my friends and frenemies who gave it everything out there," Kalmoe tweeted.
The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) responded to Kalmoe's mean remarks:
"How badly our victories unnerve our colleagues. Yes, we are here at the Olympics. Absolutely rightfully, whether someone likes it or not. It takes one to learn how to lose, but not everyone can do it. Someone started playing the broken record about the Russian doping again. Someone is spinning it again," the ROC wrote on Twitter.
In an interview with lenta.ru publication, Svetlana Zhurova said that one should not respond to such attacks:
"We need to understand that we are dealing with a victim of propaganda that has been gathering pace in US media lately, and there is nothing we can do about it," Svetlana Zhurova said.
According to Zhurova, there is a new generation of Russian athletes performing in Tokyo, and they have been "tested under a magnifying glass."
"They are absolutely clean and they do not even think about taking anything," she said. On the one hand, this is such helplessness when you lose and then you start accusing others of unfair performance, but on the other hand, this is so brainwashed," the politician said.
Vasilisa Stepanova and Elena Oryabinskaya of Russia won silver at coxless pair finals on July 29. Rowers from New Zealand finished first, athletes from Canada took the bronze. The USA national team did not make it to the final.
Russian athletes perform at the 20202 Tokyo Games with no Russian anthem and no Russian flag. Officially, Russian athletes represent the Russian Olympic Committee.
In December 2020, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) imposed a two-year ban on the performance of Russian athletes under the national flag at international competitions as a result of a major doping scandal.