Jamaican sprinter Powell banned for 18 months

Thu Apr 10, 2014 12:45pm EDT
 
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By Kayon Raynor

KINGSTON (Reuters) - Former 100 meters world record holder Asafa Powell was banned for 18 months by a Jamaican anti-doping disciplinary panel on Thursday after he tested positive for a banned substance last year.

The Jamaican sprinter, 31, tested positive for the stimulant oxilophrine at last year's national championships and the ban has been backdated to June 21 2013 - the day he provided the sample. His ban will end on Dec 20.

Powell said he would lodge an appeal against the decision.

"This ruling is not only unfair, it is patently unjust," he said in a statement.

The chairman of the three-member disciplinary panel, Lennox Gayle, said: "The panel arrived at a unanimous decision, and it is a decision that in all the circumstances Mr. Powell was found to be negligent and that he was at fault, especially in light of the fact he (is) an elite athlete.

"It is our decision that the period of ineligibility will be 18 months commencing from the date of the sample collection ... the period will expire on the 20th of December 2014."

Powell added: "Panels such as these, I understood, were assembled to allow athletes who, consciously or unconsciously, come into conflict with the rules of sport a chance at equitable redemption. Unfortunately, this was not the case.

"This is the first time in nearly 12 years of being in the sport and over 150 tests that I have had an adverse finding. It is for a stimulant, a stimulant that is only banned during competition and experts have declared has no performance enhancing effects.   Continued...

 
Jamaica's Olympic runner Asafa Powell, who tested positive for doping at the Jamaican Championships in 2013, takes a lunch break on the first day of his hearing before the country's anti-doping commission in Kingston January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Gilbert Bellamy