Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
Egyptian javelin thrower Ihab Abdelrahman is planning an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against a two-year sanction, after his B sample confirmed an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for testosterone. ‘After more than six months of waiting, I received notification from the Egyptian anti-doping agency stating that I would receive a two-year ban for use of testosterone’, read a statement published on Abdelrahman’s Facebook page. ‘Of course, I will lodge an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport within a week of the release of the merits of this decision against the Egyptian organisation and the laboratory which analysed the sample’.
Abdelrahman was provisionally suspended on 21 July last year ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, in which he had qualified to compete. On 20 July 2016, the Egyptian NADO was notified that his A sample revealed the presence of metabolites of testosterone consistent with an exogenous (external) origin. The decision to suspend him was orally communicated to Abdelrahman a day later. Although Abdelrahman was aware of the provisional suspension and set in motion steps to have his B sample analysed on 24 July, he did not receive a written decision from the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) until 27 July, via fax.
Abdelrahman filed an appeal at the CAS against his provisional suspension on 7 August, after the start of the Rio 2016 Olympics on 5 August. Although the CAS agreed that his application for lifting of his provisional suspension was admissible, it ruled that he had not met the requirements necessary for it to be lifted. ‘The mere assertion that the Athlete did not take a Prohibited Substance is not a basis to contest the existence of an AAF with respect to a non-specified substance, which is – absent any deviations in the results management process – the main basis for a mandatory provisional suspension according to the applicable rules’, read the CAS judgment.
Abdelrahman denies ever having taken a prohibited substance. ‘I have not and will not take steroids intentionally’, continued his statement. ‘We have a lot of questions that the Egyptian organisation will be forced to answer in front of the international sports court. I will fight until my last breath until the last of what money I have is spent to show the truth in front of you all.’