Golovanov Receives Compensation

Our Christmas Day inbox included a message from Russian Deaflympic wrestler Eugene Golovanov thanking us for highlighting the issues over the RSDC submitting a falsified audiogram in his name.


We can confirm by his message that we received this morning, that the sum of 100,000 rubbles was deposited into his bank account on 19th December, this was unknown to us as we promoted the story on 21st December – so we are pleased to see that Eugene has been compensated for moral damages.


It is not known to either Eugene or ourselves, if this deposit was made in the knowledge that we were going to go public with the story or if it was a happy coincidence.


Golovanov said “I hope that after this publication, I would not (be) interfere with participation in the Championship of Russia on March 23-25, 2015.”

ICSD Executive Officials Guilty of Falsifying Audiograms

How many Deaf athletes are guilty of falsifying their audiograms?

The BBC recently stated that a German TV documentary claims that 99% of Russian athletes are guilty of doping. You can find a link to this report at the end of this post.

The TV documentary is another investigation about Russian officials systematically accepting payments from athletes to supply banned substances and cover up tests. Not surprisingly, the Russian Athletic Federation (RAF) says the allegations are ‘lies’. The IAAF and WADA say they are investigating; hopefully they will be thorough.

Now, we mention this because in Deaf sport, it is the audiograms which are sacrosanct – falsifying an audiogram is as serious as it gets, just as ‘doping’ gives athletes an advantage, submitting a false audiogram to pretend that you are Deaf enough to compete in Deaf sport and the Deaflympics is cheating.

Does Audiogram cheating occur in Deaf sport? At the Deaflympics there are WADA anti-doping tests and random Audiogram testing to catch out the cheats. This happens at every Deaflympics, and it is a good thing, because it shows that the ICSD are vigilant about audiograms and the Deaflympic Movement values the inviolability of the Olympic Code as we compete under the banner of the ICSD and IOC.

More often than not in doping and audiogram checks, it is athletes who are caught out and banned, but occasionally coaches and officials are too. But what about a member of a National Olympic Committee or indeed a high –level member of staff at the IOC, what would happen if they cheated by falsifying information, would they be given a ban? Yes, indeed, we expect they would, just as IOC members are stripped of their membership for accepting bribes etc.

Unfortunately, most unfortunately, this type of cheating and cover up is occurring right now at the highest levels of the ICSD. I have read information that the Russian Deaf Sports Confederation (RDSC) was found guilty of falsifying audiograms. I have seen legal Moscow Court documents, supplied by a Russian Deaflympic wrestler Eugene Golovanov, showing that the RDSC have been ordered to pay compensation to him as the court ruled that the RDSC falsified his audiogram in order to discredit him. As well as making compensation payments, the RDSC were also ordered by the court to issue a public statement vindicating the wrestler. The falsification of the audiogram took place in 2011.

RDSC immediately appealed against the decision, which they eventually lost in early 2014. According to my correspondence with Mr Golovanov he has still not received the compensation and he continues to meet resistance form the RDSC to allow him to compete.

Dmitry Rebrov is the man who submitted the false audiogram in 2011 and “strongly urged” ICSD administrators to check the details. After the RDSC had been taken to court, they continued to keep Mr Rebrov in office as they defied the court order and lodged their appeal.


Photo: Dimitry Rebrov, who submitted a falsified audiogram to the ICSD in 2011.

 Following his appointment as President of ICSD in 2013, Mr Rukhledev personally appointed Rebrov as interim CEO of ICSD and then recently, he was awarded the job permanently and presumably, with the approval of the ICSD Executive. Today, the Deaflympic Movement is lead by its Chief Executive who has been caught behaving in the most malicious way imaginable. This situation of leadership and management is untenable, as Rebrov and the RDSC have still not compensated Eugene Golovanov and shielded this scandal from public knowledge until now.

The problem highlighted by this case, is that National Federations who are trying to win medals are also responsible for the audiograms of their athletes. This is a clear conflict of interest and vulnerable to abuse as we have seen with the RDSC.

ICSD should consider setting up an anti-doping AND audiogram commission to ensure checks are taking place independently and impartial in respective member countries – with what we know already about the Russians, there is doubt that they would push for this to happen.

BBC Report “Russian Doping claims: 99% of athletes guilty, German TV alleges.”  http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/athletics/30324812

Deaf Judoka wins British Championship Medals

We just want to congratulate Michele Boyle who is Profoundly Deaf and competes for Edinburgh Dynamic Judo who has just won the British Junior Womens title in the over 78Kg category.


Michelle went on to compete in the Senior competition the following day and came away with a bronze

2014 has been an impressive year for Boyle as she also took Bronze at the Lithuania Junior European Cup following on from a successful international year at cadet level in 2013.

British Judo rate Michelle as a talent to watch out for in the future in the heavyweight categories.

Read more on the UK Deaf Sport website  and British Judo website

Deaf lose up to seven years of life.

The BBC News website today has reported that obese people are at risk of losing up to eight years of life. Many would not find that surprising, even non-scientist could tell you that being obese is a serious health risk and potentially people could shorten their life-spans. You can read more on this report at the end of this post.

What I think people will find more surprising is that people aged 20-40 years old today have a 50% likelihood of losing seven years of life because they will develop a significant hearing loss in the remainder of their lifetimes and that untreated hearing loss will put them at risk to depression, anxiety, social isolation, chronic health conditions (diabetes, acute kidney disease and chronic heart disease) and mental health leading to a loss of seven years of life.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) study Global Burden on Disease (2000) calculated that adult-onset hearing loss was, at the time, the world’s second leading cause of Years Lost to Disability.

17% of the adult population in the US, 30% of 60-70 year olds and 50% of those over age of 75, have a significant hearing loss. Between 9% and 22% of this group also have a dual sensory disability of severe sight and hearing loss. It is the worlds third most prevalent chronic health condition facing older adults and in the UK, it is expected to be in the top ten disease burdens, above cataracts and diabetes, by 2031.

Western nations are facing an ageing population in 2010-2030 as the baby boomers reach the age of 65. Currently, only 20% of Americans with a hearing loss and 1 in 3 in the UK seek help, leaving a total of 32.8 million people with no support to manage life with their hearing loss.

You can read more about this impending epidemic and find out what the Deaflympic Movement and Deaf sport should do to alleviate this impending health and economic crisis in Same Spirit Different Team.

“Obese lose up to eight years of life”, James Gallagher, Health Editor, BBC News website.

A Tribute to Professor Margaret Talbot OBE PhD, FRSA

Today at 7:55am, Deaf sport lost one of its greatest supporters, Professor Margaret Talbot.

Margaret Talbot

I am greatly indebted to Margaret, as I, like countless others, can count her as one of my loyal friends and a great professional mentor. She never wanted anything in return, always happy to share her thoughts and offer insight when things were going well or falling apart. I treated her counsel with care because her time and support was something special and valuable, not to be abused.

I first met Margaret when I was 19 years old, working at Friends for Young Deaf people in the early 1980s, she took a great interest in our sport and development work with young deaf and hearing people – at that time, we were pioneering Deaf people’s involvement in the CCPR Community Sports Leaders Award and it was through her inspiration as CEO of the Association of Physical Education UK that contributed towards my decision to get into PE teaching.

Later, when she was CEO at the Central Council for Physical Recreation, she encouraged me to speak publicly at meetings and conferences about Deaf sport and challenge her peers and political decision makers to think about how National Governing Bodies of sport and education could be more inclusive and equitable.

When I came to write “Same Spirit Different Team – The Politicisation of the Deaflympics. Margaret was there to offer guidance, even offering the time to read drafts and suggest changes. It did not matter that she held high office in the world of sport and acted as consultant to the United Nations, she never forgot those of us at the chalk-face, in the classrooms, on the sports fields; we were her equals, no matter what.

I hold a deep sense of gratitude to Professor Talbot and cherish every word she wrote in her Foreword for my book. Those of us, who had the privilege to know her, will remember her as someone who knew how to challenge ignorance and bigotry in a way that allowed people not to lose face, a rare talent indeed.

Happy Travels my Friend.