International Athletics

Britain gives coach life ban for doping offences

2016-03-16 18:11

London - Britain's anti-doping agency has banned athletics coach George Skafidas from all sport for life for nine doping-related offences, it was announced Wednesday.

The Greek's ban arises from his work coaching British sprinter Bernice Wilson, who was herself given a four-year ban for testing positive for two anabolic steroids in 2011 after she failed a drugs test three months after competing at the European Indoor Championships in Paris.

United Kingdom Anti-Doping (UKAD) said Skafidas had administered the banned drugs and was also responsible.

It also found that, before Wilson returned to athletics, her Greek coach administered further prohibited substances.

Wilson tested positive for clomiphene in February 2015, but a statement issued by UKAD on Wednesday said that as a result of her "prompt admission and the substantial assistance she has given UKAD", the latest ban would be cut from 40 months to 10 months, although it is unlikely the 31-year-old will return to the track.

"This case is not only incredibly disturbing but sad," said UKAD chief executive Nicole Sapstead.

"Here is a coach who set-up and ran a training group for young and talented athletes; athletes like Bernice who had a bright and promising future in the sport. He was put into a position of trust, he abused that trust and as a result categorically destroyed a career."

Sapstead added: "I applaud the bravery of Bernice Wilson for coming forward to speak to us. I would encourage anyone with information, no matter how big or small, to come forward and tell us what they know in confidence via reportdoping.com."

Read more on:    athletics
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