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Last Updated: Wednesday, 29 October, 2003, 15:39 GMT
THG: Where are we now?
Shockwaves from the THG steroid scandal which broke last week are still reverberating around the world.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) has written to all international sports federations and all national anti-doping agencies, encouraging them to analyse currently-stored samples for the presence of THG.

But how is each sport dealing with the crisis?


Football

British footballers undergoing drugs tests will have their samples checked for THG from now on.

"My understanding is that these tests would be applied to all sports," said UK Sport's anti-doping chief Michelle Verroken. "I see no reason at all why football will not be included."


Athletics

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is to re-test all urine samples given at this year's World Championships for THG.

USA Track & Field has proposed tougher drug rules which could include lifetime bans for first steroid offences, while UK Sport has set up a phone hotline for tip-offs about suspected use of illegal drugs by athletes and coaches.

And the International Olympic Commission announced on Friday that it would test for THG at next year's Athens Games.


Rugby union

World Cup officials are to begin testing next week for THG.

The competition's anti-doping committee said new laboratory procedures developed to analyse the drug were being implemented in Sydney. The test will be applied to all new samples collected and could be retroactive to earlier samples.

Scotland coach Ian McGeechan is unconcerned - "Rugby's just not part of that culture," he says - but Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan is taking the doping threat more seriously.

"It is a collision sport where power and strength are critical so unfortunately, like any other power sport in the world, I think we would struggle with drugs in rugby," he says.


Cycling

The International Cycling Union has made no specific comments on THG so far, but it announced last month that Wada is no longer welcome at its events.

The UCI accused Wada of leaking a confidential report about this year's Tour de France. UCI president Hein Verbruggen said: "I do not say Wada are always unprofessional but this shows an unprofessional attitude."


Baseball

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig plans to seek more information on the federal grand jury probe of Balco, the company believed to be the source of THG.

New York Yankees' star Jason Giambi and San Francisco Giants' Barry Bonds have both been called to testify at the hearing.

"It is important to know that people have not been charged with anything," Selig said before game five of the World Series final.


American football

The National Football League might retest its existing samples for THG, a spokesman said on Monday. Steroid use is banned by the NFL, and those players caught using them can be suspended.

"It's a possibility," Aiello said. "We are not ruling it out."

At least seven NFL stars, including Oakland's Bill Romanowski, have been called to give evidence to the federal grand jury.


Swimming

World governing body Fina is looking in to the possibility of re-testing all urine samples taken at the World Championships in July.

The organisation is carrying out its own study into the steroid before deciding whether to go ahead with testing.



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