13th September 2019

West Coast Eagles AFL player suspended for urine substitution

Willie Rioli of West Coast Eagles has been provisionally suspended after a 20 August sample suggested that there had been an attempt to substitute his urine, the Australian Football League (AFL) announced yesterday. ‘It is asserted that Rioli’s A sample returned an Adverse Analytical Finding for Urine Substitution being a Prohibited Method following an Out-of-Competition doping control test’, read a statement.

“It’s something other than urine that has been produced by Willie as part of the testing process”, said West Coast Eagles General Manager Craig Vozzo in a press conference (video below). Rioli is the subject of a joint investigation by the AFL and the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA), the Perth-based club confirmed in a statement.

Rioli will be represented by David Grace QC, who represented the Essendon 34 in their successful appeal against the AFL’s decision to sanction them for doping offences, which was controversially overturned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). It is understood that the player, who originates from the Tiwi Islands off the coast of Australia’s Northern Territory, has flown to Darwin to be with family and friends. At time of press, West Coast Eagles were 32-7 down to Geelong Cats in an AFL semi-final.

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