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Monday, 3 July, 2000, 20:52 GMT 21:52 UK
Ottey cleared to run again
Merlene Ottey
Back on track: Merlene Ottey has been cleared
The ban imposed on Jamaican sprint star Merlene Ottey for failing a drugs test has been lifted by the International Amateur Athletic Federation.

In a statement, the IAAF said that its arbitration panel has "decided that there were not the grounds to maintain the suspension of Merlene Ottey from competition".

The former 200m world champion tested positive for nandrolone on 5 July last year in Switzerland, with the case coming to light just days before the World Athletics Championships in Seville.

But the IAAF said: "The arbitration panel considered that the testing laboratory had not taken into sufficient account factors regarding the specific gravity of the sample, which as a result did not exceed the International Olympic Committee-recommended reporting threshold."

Considered

The panel was made up of chairman Christoph Vedder of Germany, South African Monty Hacker and James Michael Murphy of the United States.

Ottey's case had been considered at a hearing at IAAF headquarters in Monaco between 16-17 June.

The 40-year-old has always denied the charge and had been cleared by the Jamaican national athletics federation.

Ottey pulled out of the World Championships in Spain last August in a blaze of publicity after her second test from the Lucerne meeting had been returned positive.

She insisted at the time that there had been a "terrible mistake" and vowed to clear her name.

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See also:

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