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JADCo dismisses IOC member’s claim against J'can athletes

A pound of rubbish

Tuesday, August 14, 2012    

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THE Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCo) yesterday rubbished a claim by International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Dick Pound that it is difficult to test Jamaican athletes because they are hard find.

In fact, JADCo pointed out that data held by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) show the opposite to Pound's allegation.

"The claim by Mr Pound that the Jamaican athletes cannot be found for testing is without any foundation whatsoever," JADCo said in a news release issued yesterday evening.

"This is confirmed by the fact that the WADA database (Anti-Doping Administration and Management System - ADAMS) holding such information of all tests and missed tests does not confirm his allegation. In addition, JADCo has never received any complaints regarding the athletes not being found for testing," the commission said.

Pound elicited the JADCo response after he was reported as telling Reuters Television that Jamaican athletes, who dominated the sprint events at the just-concluded London Olympics, should expect more visits from drug testers.

Asked whether he was happy with the way Jamaica tested its athletes, Pound said "No, they are one of the groups that are hard to test, it is (hard) to get in and find them and so forth.

"I think they can expect, with the extraordinary results that they have had, that they will be on everybody's radar."

Jamaica's athletes dominated the sprint events for the second successive Olympic Games, with Usain Bolt defending his 100m and 200m crowns. His teammate Yohan Blake placed second in the 100m, as well as in the 200m which the Jamaicans swept with Warren Weir placing third.

The Jamaican men also defended their 4x100m title, lowering the world record they set in Beijing four years ago to 36.84 seconds last Saturday night.

In the women's events, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce repeated her 100m victory ahead of Veronica Campbell Brown, who placed third. Fraser-Pryce also placed second in the 200m before partnering with Campbell Brown, Sherone Simpson and Kerron Stewart to take silver in the 4x100m.

Bronze medals were won by Jamaica's women's 4x400m team and by Hansle Parchment in the 110m hurdles.

Yesterday, JADCo said it was acutely aware that the Jamaican athletes, by their high level of performance, will attract the attention of the world.

"Therefore, every track and field athlete representing Jamaica at the recent Olympics was tested In-Competition in June 2012. In conjunction with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), elite athletes were tested more than once. All results were negative," JADCo said.

In the days just before the start of the London Olympics, word out of the Jamaican camp was that the island's athletes were being subjected to extraordinarily frequent testing. Sprinter Asafa Powell was said to have been tested thrice in a week.

In his Reuters TV interview, Pound is reported to have said the IOC was still a long way away from winning the fight against doping, with 11 athletes being expelled from the Games since July 16.

"I think it is too soon to say. I think we are gaining and getting better at science," said Pound. "We are starting to get better at smart testing. But there is a long way to go yet. In Churchillian terms, it is not the beginning of the end, but the end of the beginning."

Pound, a Canadian attorney who specialises in tax law, earned his undergraduate and law degrees at McGill University in Montreal.

He was one of the prime candidates to succeed Juan Antonio Samaranch as IOC president in 2001, but lost to Jacques Rogge. After that election, he resigned as chairman of the IOC Finance Commission.

He was also the chairman of the IOC commission that oversaw the Olympic Bribery Scandal in 1999, and was named the first chairman of WADA, a post to which he was re-elected in 2004, serving through 2007.

Pound is regarded as the most influential IOC member who has never succeeded to the IOC presidency.

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