Russian world high jump champion Maria Lasitskene has said she won’t get vaccinated against Covid-19 yet as she is afraid of potential side effects and is awaiting an announcement from the anti-doping authorities.
The only female high jumper to win three world titles, Lasitskene explained she worries about the effect the vaccine could have on her body, stressing she wouldn’t be taking the step until the jab is compulsory for all professional athletes.
“As an athlete I really worry how the vaccine can affect my body and my physical shape,” the high jumper said.
“As long as the vaccination is voluntary, I would abstain from it. I will see how the situation develops, because so far I haven’t received confirmation from anti-doping officials that it has been officially approved,” she explained.
She also expressed concern that athletes might be obliged to receive a special type of jab to be eligible to compete internationally.
The Russian champion said she would avoid Covid-19 vaccination until it is compulsory for all athletes and officially approved by health authorities, including the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
“Besides, health authorities might introduce special health passports which will allow entrance to foreign countries to those immunized by a certain type of vaccine which will be approved worldwide. Though I won’t get vaccinated until it’s compulsory,” Lasitskene said.