FORMER British bobsledder John Jackson has expressed his support for the International Olympic Committee’s decision to effectively ban Russia from the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

Jackson and the rest of his GB four-man crew are in line to receive a retrospective bronze medal from Sochi 2014 after two Russian crews that finished ahead of them were disqualified for doping by the International Olympic Committee last week.

The IOC announced on Monday that there will be no Russian flags or anthems in Pyeongchang, and only Russians who can prove they have not cheated – verified by credible anti-doping agencies – will be invited to take part.

Jackson said: “I always said the IOC should ban Russia as a nation and their flag should not be seen in Pyeongchang, but any athlete who can prove they are clean can compete.

“It is going to be quite difficult to prove or disprove their eligibility but as an athlete, all you can ask is that you are allowed to compete on a level playing field to everyone else.”

The issue of Russian eligibility is particularly pertinent within the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation, who have twice issued provisional suspensions to Russian athletes, only to have to lift their sanctions based on legal advice.

A number of those banned Russians – including Alexander Kasjanov, whose ban by the IOC last week effectively facilitated Jackson’s rise to bronze – are competing in the IBSF World Cup in Winterberg this weekend.

Jackson added: “I imagine the atmosphere at the track might sometimes get a little bit uncomfortable. But as an athlete you’ve just got to focus on getting on with business and leave the rest to the bodies concerned.”