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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 November 2007, 18:43 GMT
Pound backs Ohuruogu ban appeal
Christine Ohuruogu
Ohuruogu bounced back from her ban by winning the 400m world title
Christine Ohuruogu's attempt to reverse her Olympic ban has been backed by the leading anti-doping voice in sport.

Dick Pound, chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency, said the British Olympic Association (BOA) was wrong to impose a lifetime ban on Ohuruogu.

"If I was her lawyer I would say doping offences are governed by the world anti-doping code and provides from this penalty for a first offence," he said.

"It does not call for lifetime denial of access to the Olympics."

Ohuruogu completed a year's ban in August for missing three out-of-competition drugs tests.


She returned just before the World Championships in Osaka where she won the 400m title, but she remains suspended for life from competing at the Olympic Games under a BOA by-law.

Speaking at the FT Sport Summit in London, Pound lent his weight in support of the 23-year-old athlete being cleared to compete in Beijing.

"I have some legal sympathy with her although, as an Olympian, I would like to say to anybody the first time they do it and it's clear that it's not an accident, I don't want to play with you any more, ever.

"The system in which we are working says for the first offence you serve a penalty and then you can come back in."

No date has been set but Ohuruogu's hearing in front of the BOA's independent appeals panel will be in mid-late November.

Athletes can appeal against the rule on any of the following grounds:

  • The doping offence was minor
  • Significant mitigating circumstances existed in relation to the doping offence
  • There was a finding of no fault or negligence or of no significant fault or negligence in respect of the doping offence

Ohuruogu's chances of clearing her name were boosted recently when the BOA cleared triathlon world champion Tim Don and judo player Peter Cousins, who both also missed out-of-competition drugs tests.

Ohuruogu named GB Athlete of Year
27 Oct 07 |  Athletics
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23 Sep 07 |  Athletics
Ohuruogu wants to stay in Britain
10 Sep 07 |  Athletics
Ohuruogu claims gold for Britain
29 Aug 07 |  Athletics


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