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Last Updated: Friday, 5 March, 2004, 14:46 GMT
Plant given 18-month ban
Guildford Flames forward Rick Plant has been handed an 18-month suspension after he failed a routine drugs test.

Plant tested positive at a British National League clash with Bracknell Bees at Amen Corner on 6 December.

A banned Class 'A' stimulant was confirmed by the 'B' sample, and carries a maximum two-year ban for a first offence under new guidelines.

Plant, who has the right to request an appeal, will be ruled out of the game from 1 March until 31 August 2005.

British ice hockey's governing body Ice Hockey UK confirmed the punishment at a disciplinary hearing on Friday.

Guildford have pledged to offer their all-time top-scoring British-trained player all the help he needs.

"Rick has been with us for six seasons, and there is not a bad thing we can say about this classy young man," they said in a club statement.

"Rick is a quality person, and we give him nothing but our sincerest good wishes for the future.

"This is a very difficult situation, and we are offering our assistance to help Rick with anything he may need in dealing with these unfortunate circumstances."

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