BY ELLIOT MATHYE
The South African national rugby management is still trying to come into terms with shocking revelations that two of the team’s senior players tested positive for a banned substance, methylhexaneamine in Edinburgh on Monday, November 15.
The players namely Bjorn Basson and Chiliboy Ralepelle are set to be touching base at Johannesburg’s OR International while the management is sending a large number of supplements, energy drinks and other medication to Edinburgh based labs for testing, with a fear that the rest of the squad might be implicated.
The two players in question were picked for testing after the Springboks’ Test against Ireland in Dublin on November 6. Surprisingly, the pair was treated for flu before that match.
The substance is a new product in the list of banned substances of the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) with 9 Australian athletes having tested positive for it when tests were performed during the Commonwealth Games this year.
Springboks coach, Peter de Villiers is no happy man as the panel of six National Rugby Ltd administrators confirmed that players in the southern hemisphere were tested positive for the same substance earlier this month during a drug test.
“Tests are done all the time in the team and we were shocked when the news came, as we were analyzing our performance in the game we played during the weekend. At the moment I cannot confirm anything and as a team, we have not let out guard down and we will work together with the management to get to the bottom of this”, said a concerned De Villiers.
The substance is reported not to be famous in sports, but should a player be tested positive, a potential 2 year ban will be insured. The last player to be banned for using this particular substance is Free States age group player, Johan Goosen who narrowly escaped with a three-month ban for testing positive.
South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport, Dr Shuaib Manjra told a local newspaper that Boks team doctor Craig Roberts could be banned with the two players, should they test positive during a B-sample test to take place before IRB disciplinary.
A worried Robrts said: “The two players were on treatment and have been so for quite some time with no problems. The medication arranged is used for the standard treatment of colds and flu. All possibilities will be taken into considerations but it is still too early to confirm any faults with their medication”.