1st December 2017

Rugby Union Player Banned for Two Years

Joseph Stokes of Matson RFC has been suspended from all sport for a period of two years following the decision of an independent National Anti-Doping Panel for an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV). Stokes tested positive for the presence of the prohibited substance Benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine. He was tested following a match between Matson RFC and Clevedon RFC on 11 March 2017.

Nicole Sapstead, UKAD’s Chief Executive, said: “Every athlete must adhere to the principle of strict liability; they are solely responsible for what is in their system regardless of how it got there. I hope that a case such as this one will act as a deterrent to others and demonstrate that there is no place for athletes who go against the culture of clean and fair sport.”

The period of ineligibility shall apply from the date of the provisional suspension (31 March 2017) until midnight on 30 March 2019. The full written decision can be found under current rule violations.

• This media release was originally published by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) on 1 December 2017. To access the original, please click here.

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