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I have never been in clean event: Phelps

AAP logoAAP 3/08/2016 By Laine Clark

Olympic great Michael Phelps fears he has never competed in a clean event during his glittering swimming career.

The most decorated Olympian of all time made the stunning claim when asked about the Russian doping controversy ahead of the Rio Games.

"We all want clean sports. That's all we want," Phelps told a packed Rio press conference on Wednesday.

"I can honestly say in my career I don't know if I've ever competed in a clean sport - it's upsetting."

The 18-time Olympic gold medallist said the Russian doping controversy indicated drug cheats were not just swimming's problem.

More than 100 Russians, including seven swimmers and the entire track and field team, have been banned from Rio.

But the Court of Arbitration for Sport still has more appeals to consider just days before the Rio Games.

"There's something that needs to change about all sports, not just swimming," Phelps said ahead of his fifth Games.

"As athletes you want to be able to compete on an even playing field.

"We've had this problem for how many Olympics?

"It seems almost every time something comes up.

"It's sad that we can't control it, that somebody who is in charge cannot control this."

Phelps' long time coach Bob Bowman claimed the "system is broken".

"It's very concerning to me that our governing bodies have dropped the ball in many ways on this," he said.

"The system is broken and it has to be fixed."

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