Hayne's Rio dream will not be derailed by doping rules

Mon May 16, 2016 6:02am EDT
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By Greg Stutchbury

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Fiji's Olympic committee see no impediment to Jarryd Hayne joining their rugby sevens team for the Rio Games, even though he has not been subject to World Anti-Doping Agency accredited testing procedures while playing in the NFL.

Hayne, who played one season for the San Francisco 49ers, said on Sunday he had chosen to "retire" from the NFL after being approached by the Fiji Rugby Union about making himself available for Rio.

Former Australian Sports Anti-doping Authority (ASADA) head Richard Ings, however, said in comments widely reported by Australian media that the former rugby league international would be ineligible for the Olympics.

His reasoning was that Hayne would have to be part of a WADA-recognized testing program for six months prior to the Aug. 5-21 Games.

The NFL has its own anti-doping policy but is not a signatory to the WADA code.

The head of Fiji's Olympic Committee said she could not speak about Hayne specifically but said their selection policies did not require athletes to go through an effective six month stand down period while they entered the testing program prior to representing the country.

"No (there is no requirement). Every athlete who becomes a squad member and then finally a Team Fiji member is aware that at some stage they could be randomly chosen to be drug tested," FOC Secretary General Lorraine Mar told Reuters from Suva.

"There is no criteria that they have to be tested a number of times. So that's not a consideration, but the athlete needs to be aware they could be drug tested."   Continued...

Sep 14, 2015; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Jarryd Hayne (38) poses with an Australian flag after the game against the Minnesota Vikings at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports