Athletes need to 'man up', says Collins
LONDON, England (CMC) — Veteran St Kitts and Nevis sprinter Kim Collins believes athletes who test positive for banned substances need to "man up" instead of resorting to excuses.
The former world champion, now in the twilight of his career, told BBC Sport it was important that athletes took responsibility for their actions, similar to what British sprinter Dwain Chambers did after his failed drugs test back in 2003.
Collins was reacting after Thursday's announcement that Jamaican sprint star Asafa Powell would be slapped with an 18-month ban for testing positive last June.
"Whenever these tests come out, people have some really strange excuses. Very few people man up, and I think that's why Dwain ended up in so much trouble, for saying the truth," said Collins, in reference to Chambers's two-year ban.
"In track and field, when it comes to cheating, you do not tell the truth. You lie, lie, lie. And everybody says, 'Oh, he really didn't do it.' Come on, we all know."
He continued: "Man up. Man up. Man up. When I'm out there losing to you, or anyone else is losing to you, man up. If you're a woman, the same thing applies: man up.
"It's one of the ways you can go right, where you say, 'OK, I made this mistake. This was why I felt I needed to do it, but I'm telling you that it's not worth it. This is what I had, and this is all that I lost.'"
Powell, a former world record holder in the 100 metres, tested positive for the stimulant oxilofrine at Jamaica's National Senior Championships, but blamed Canadian physical trainer Chris Xureb, who provided him with the supplements that included the banned substance.
Xureb denied the claim.
However, a three-member Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission disciplinary panel said Powell had been "negligent" and had been "at fault", and imposed the sanction that will see him ineligible for competition until December 28 this year.
Collins said it was inexcusable to lay blame on others.
"You say you trust this guy, and he got you into this trouble. What can you say? You trusted him," the 38-year-old asserted.
"But I'm on my own. So I have nobody about whom I can say, 'I trusted this person.' I take full responsibility for what happens. But you cannot put the blame on anybody else by saying, 'I trusted people.'"