Tuesday, October 21, 2014

BAM: Top national shuttler fails doping test

KUALALUMPUR: An official from the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) yesterday confirmed that a top Malaysian shuttler has failed a random doping test conducted during the World Championships in Copenhagen in August.

BAM and other concerned parties were notified after the recent Asian Games in Incheon.
The top male player, who had won a string of tournaments, had played in Incheon and also contributed medals.

The latest revelation came after a Malaysian bookie allegedly approached two Danish players to fix matches in the Japan Open in June.
The official said the player’s doping test showed traces of a low-level drug banned by the World Anti- Doping Agency (WADA).

The shuttler is awaiting the result of the “B” sample.
“I can’t remember the name of the banned substance but it is neither anabolic steroids nor a performance- enhancing drug.

“The shuttler must have taken it unintentionally but he should have been more careful,” said the official yesterday.

“BAM does not want to make a statement before the ‘B’ sample result is released.
“Everyone is aware of it, including National Sports Institute (NSI) chief executive officer Datuk Dr Ramlan Aziz and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

“The NSI and those concerned will make a statement in due time.

It is a high-profile case and we need to make sure everything is in order before releasing a statement.”
The official confirmed that the shuttler had played in the recent Asian Games. Dr Ramlan and other sports officials had, so far, refused to comment on the issue.

Among those who featured in Incheon were World No. 1 Datuk Lee Chong Wei, Chong Wei Feng, Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin, Goh Soon Huat, Goh V Shem, Tan Wee Kiong, Tan Boon Heong and Hoon Thien How.

A prominent coach with BAM said the player’s test result was made known to the coaches after the Asian Games that ran from Sept 19 to Oct 4.

“It was a random test conducted when the World Championship (in August) was going on,” said the coach.

WADA’s list of banned substances includes stimulants, gene doping, diuretics and other masking agents, hormone and metabolic modulators, anabolic agents, growth hormones and Beta-2 agonists.

The Badminton World Federation, BAM and other related agencies are expected to make an announcement soon. The player, if found guilty, could face a two-year suspension but he can appeal.
The incident is the second doping scandal to hit the local sport scene in less than a month. Wushu exponent Tai Cheau Xuen was stripped of her Asian Games gold medal after failing a dope test.



By Ajitpal Singh and Fabian Peters - NST

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