Rowing dope scandal: Food supplements could be reason, says RFI

Majority of the 22 athletes , who tested positive for probenecid (a fat cutter), were hand-picked from government’s flagship project ‘Khelo India’

All the rowers have decided against testing of their B samples in the light of their inability to travel to Doha due to the COVID-19 related restrictions.   -  G. Ramakrishna

Rowing Federation of India (RFI) takes the matter of an adverse analytical finding being issued against 22 (twenty-two) junior rowers seriously and it is committed to drug free rowing and will fully co-operate with NADA in ensuring the same, according to M.V. Sriram, Secretary-General of RFI.

“This Adverse Analytical Finding being issued against 22 junior rowers, who attended the national training camp held at Hyderabad in July 2019, is being looked at seriously,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.

“We are also given to understand that the rowers have waived the testing of the B-Sample in light of their inability to travel to Doha due to COVID-19 related travel restrictions,” the RFI official said.
 

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“The Federation is speaking to the stakeholders who were involved in organising and conducting the camp and will not tolerate any mischief or misdemeanor in relation to the sport in India.”

“The matter is pending before NADA and involves minor rowers, therefore, we assure complete co-operation in ensuring that the proceedings are held in a fair manner, to ensure effective governance of the sport in India,” Mr. Sriram said.

“We also deny any wrongdoing, as an Institution, as alleged in some papers and would like to state that NADA officials have been regularly visiting our coaching camps and interacting with out attendees,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, in an interview to PTI, Sriram said food supplements could be a reason behind the fiasco.

“It has to be the food supplements used which has resulted in 22 cases out of the 32 tested in July last year in Hyderabad. We are also perplexed by the findings. Obviously all due procedures will be followed,” he said.

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