— Published 8 August 2023

Krystsina Tsimanouskaya can run for Poland

Former Belarusian athlete Krystsina Tsimanouskaya, who went down in history at the Tokyo 2020 Games for escaping her trainers and refusing to return home, is back in the news. She can now represent her host country, Poland, in international competitions. A letter from the World Athletics review committee dedicated to nationalities establishes that the sprinter can wear Poland’s colors from August 6, 2023. The young woman shared it on social networks. Her status has also been updated on the World Athletics website. Athletics’ world governing body usually requires a three-year waiting period before athletes can compete under the colors of a new country. But the rules specify that this condition can be waived in “exceptional circumstances“. Krystsina Tsimanouskaya’s case obviously falls into this category. The former Belarusian can, in theory, take part in the 2023 World Championships in Budapest, scheduled to start on August 19. However, the Polish Federation has not confirmed whether or not she will be selected for the national team. After her stunt at the last Olympic Games, when she defected at Tokyo airport, Krystsina Tsimanouskaya lives in Poland, where she has obtained Polish nationality.