Sergey Betov, a Belarusian tennis player has escaped doping ban after testing positive to meldonium.
Betov, 28, failed a drugs test at the Australian Open where he starred as doubles player.
While passing judgement, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) premised its decision on the amount of meldonium discovered in his sample as below that set by the world anti – doping agency (WADA).
It said: “The International Tennis Federation (ITF) accepted that it is more likely than not that the meldonium found in Mr Betov’s sample came from a course of Mildronate tablets.
“[Those] he took for six weeks ending in late October 2015,” said the ITF in a statement.
“Mr Betov did not know, and could not have known or suspected, even with the exercise of utmost caution, that the meldonium would still be in his system as of January 21, 2016 (the date of his failed test).
“Accordingly, it was determined that Mr. Betov bore no fault or negligence for the violation…and so he is free to start competing again with immediate effect.”
Consequently, he has been allowed to resume playing after serving a provisional suspension from March 12.
In their notice, WADA exonerated athletes who could not reasonably have known or suspected that meldonium would still be present on or after January 1, 2016.
It stated that if an anti-doping organisation found such, then a finding of no fault or negligence may be made.
Meldonium was only placed on the banned list on January 1 since when there have been more than 170 test failures.
But WADA has said that athletes could escape a ban for taking meldonium because it does not know for sure how long it takes the substance to leave the body.
In the meantime, Miami Marlins have washed their hands off the doping ban on baseman Dee Gordon.
In a statement from David P. Samson, Miami Marlins President acknowledged that Gordon says he didn’t intentionally ingest the drugs.
He said that it’s reminiscent of what Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Chris Colabello has been saying since his suspension last week.
Though he and Gordon tested positive for different substances, Colabello also says he didn’t know how they got into his system.
(Gordon tested positive for exogenous testosterone and clostebol, while Colabello tested positive for dehydrochlormethyltestosterone),
However, neither he nor Gordon is denying that the tests were positive.
Dee Gordon also releases statement on PED suspension:
Miami Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon was suspended 80 games early Friday morning for doping, and he’s released a statement about the incident.