Breathalyser test floored
Doc: Alcohol comes under the second category and is only prohibited in-competition
Friday, July 19, 2013 - 10:50 (The Malay Mail)
THE random breathalyser test recommended for athletes at sports competitions cannot be implemented as the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) Code caters only for six sports.
Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, in addressing questions in Parliament last week pertaining to an alleged rape and alcohol consumption at the 2013 Malaysia Games (Sukma), had said he would request the Malaysian Anti-Doping Agency (Adamas) to test athletes for alcohol besides drugs.
While it was a noble suggestion that received positive response from several national sports associations, Datuk Dr Gurcharan Singh, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) medical chairman, FIFA medical committee member and World Badminton Federation (WBF) chairman of the medical committee, clarified that alcohol consumption is a player’s right and not a criminal or doping offence except in the six sports outlined in the Wada Code.
Under the code, the 2013 prohibited list (international standard) has two categories — substances and methods prohibited at all times (in and out-of-competition) and substances prohibited in certain sports.
Alcohol comes under the second category and is only prohibited in-competition. The sports are aeronautic, archery, automobile, karate, motorcycling and power boating.
Detection of alcohol in the said sports is conducted by analysis of breath and/or blood. The doping violation threshold (haematological values) is 0.10 g/L.
“A blood concentration in excess of 0.10 g/l constitutes an anti-doping rule violation only in the specific sports outlined in the code,” explained Gurcharan, who is a consultant sports medicine physician.
“Handball is not in the list. Procedure for testing of players is stipulated within the code and needs to be adhered to accordingly. Any deviation from the international standards for testing may render the outcome invalid.
“Consuming alcohol at an unauthorised location is an offence as per local laws. Overindulgence in alcohol may lead to unacceptable behavioural conduct and is subject to disciplinary action by the sports federation, but it is not a doping offence.”
The handball players and officials were alleged to have consumed alcohol after their competition but in the Games Village.
They were believed to have been suspended pending investigations, but it is learnt that they have not been issued an official letter by the National Handball Federation.
The three handball players who were alleged to have raped a 20-year-old chaperone were charged under Section 376(1) of the Penal Code separately in three Sessions Courts last week.
All three pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The courts granted bail at RM10,000 in one surety each and fixed Aug 20 for mention.