Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
The Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) has sanctioned Dr. Ba Zhen for providing treatment to Chinese swimmer Sun Yang (pictured) at the 2014 Asian Games in September, despite being issued with a one-year ban in May 2014. The China Swimming Association banned Dr. Zhen for one year from May 2014 and Yang for three months, after the swimmer tested positive for Trimetazidine on 17 May 2014, at the Chinese National Championships. This meant that Yang’s ban had expired by the 2014 Asian Games Incheon, but Dr. Zhen’s had not.
‘Dr. Ba Zhen has violated DC Rule 10.10 (status during ineligibility [Actually Doping Control Rule 10.12]), by travelling on a private basis to the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon (KOR) and by helping to rehabilitate his athlete during that competition’, read an 8 May 2015 FINA statement. ‘This was done without the previous knowledge or consent from the Chinese National Swimming Team officials. Therefore, Dr. Ba Zhen is sanctioned with a new suspension period, this time from 28 September 2014 to 27 September 2015’.
However, it is understood from local reports that Dr. Zhen had a visa to travel to Korea, and accreditation for the Asian Games. In October last year, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) indicated that it may appeal the sanctions issued to Yang and Dr. Zhen to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). It has yet to make a decision.
Trimetazidine was added to the 2014 Prohibited List this year, and is normally given to combat angina. However, it is understood that it also aids oxygen supply to tissues during exercise.
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