Cape Town - A new book published in France claims several South African rugby players have brought with them a doping culture to the French Top 14.
The book, titled Rugby à Charges: L’Enquête Choc (Rugby Accused: The Shock Investigation), was published on Thursday.
The book is written by Pierre Ballester and claims to lift the lid on decades of serial doping within French rugby.
However, despite the many allegations involving French rugby, there are several charges levelled at South African rugby, SA Rugbymag reports.
One chapter in the book is entitled: 'South Africa, outside the norm in hormones'. Here the author says the arrival of many South African players in the Top 14 - five in the 2001-02 season and 49 in 2013-14 season - brought with it some 'questionable behaviour' regarding doping.
This comes amid the recent news that Chiliboy Ralepelle returned to South Africa after losing his Toulouse contract.
The 28-year-old had his contract with the Top 14 club terminated by mutual consent after testing positive for a banned substance last year.
He is now expected to face a doping hearing in mid-March, where he faces a two-year suspension if found guilty.
Bernard Dusfour, president of the Ligue Nationale de Rugby's medical commission, is also quoted in the book as saying: “Yes, it’s true, South Africa has been bad for us. They arrived with their ‘things’ in France.”
There’s also an account where Jacques Mombet, a former doctor of the French national team, recalls an incident involving the Springbok team which toured France in 1997.
Mombet said he was surprised by the number of prescriptions taken by the Springbok players and that the Bok doctor had approached him in the corridor an hour before the match.
He said the South African doctor pulled out a stack of papers from his briefcase - which was about 10 prescription notes, according to Mombet.
The Boks won the Test 52-10.