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Thanou eyes Olympic Games return

28 May 2008

Katerina Thanou, banned for two years after missing drug tests before the Athens Olympics, hopes to be in the Greek 4x100m relay team in Beijing.

"I'd like to help out in the 4x100 but I've not set myself any target for my 100m times," said the 33-year-old who won silver at the Sydney Games.

"What matters is that I enjoy competition without stress or anxiety.

"It's been six or seven years since I achieved my peak performance, so I will not be able to reach that level again."

Greece's most high-profile runners Thanou and fellow sprinter Kostas Kanteris famously missed drug tests on the eve of the Athens Games.

They then spent four days in hospital after claiming they were injured in a motorcycle crash. At the end of 2004 they were handed two-year bans.

Thanou had been one of one of Greece's biggest medal hopes in Athens having finished second in the Sydney 100m behind Marion Jones, who has now since been stripped of her world and Olympic medals for doping offences.

Earlier this year, Thanou had her 2001 world championship bronze medal upgraded to silver after Jones was stripped of her medal because there was no evidence the Greek committed any offence at that time.

What will happen to Jones' stripped Olympic medals has yet to be decided but Thanou's lawyer has said she may consider legal action if she is not awarded the gold from Sydney.

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