‘B´samples tested positive, tainted athletes trio face ban

‘Bsamples tested positive, tainted athletes trio face ban

New Delhi: Three Indian athletes including Commonwealth and Asian Games gold medallist Sini Jose could face a two-year ban after their ‘B´ samples tested positive for banned substances on Friday.

National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) director-general Rahul Bhatnagar said the trio of Jose, Jauna Murmu and Tiana Mary Thomas would appear before a disciplinary panel.

“Their ‘B´ samples tested positive and they will appear before an anti-doping committee," he told AFP.

The three runners were among eight athletes who have failed drug tests in recent days.

The eight were provisionally suspended pending the testing of their second, or “B", samples, said the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA). The results of ‘B´ sample tests on others are still awaited.

Jose was part of the women’s 4x400m relay team who won the gold medals at the Delhi Commonwealth Games and Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, last year along with Mandeep Kaur and Ashwini Akkunji, who also failed drugs tests.

Indian Sports Minister Ajay Maken sacked Yuri Ogorodnik, the Ukrainian coach of the 400m runners, on Tuesday.

India has never won a track medal at the Olympics and the women’s 4x400m relay team was seen as the country’s biggest hope of a podium finish at next year’s Games in London.

The athletes have all protested their innocence and blamed contaminated food supplements for the results. They have also said that there were not enough doctors to advise them on which supplements to take.

On Thursday, India’s sports ministry appointed retired judge Mukul Mudgal to head an inquiry into the doping scandal. He is expected to report within six weeks.