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Last Updated: Thursday, 23 November 2006, 10:49 GMT
Judo appeal gives GB stars hope
Christine Ohuruogu (left) and Tim Don
Ohuruogu and Don are ineligible for the Olympics after missing tests
A British judo player has won his appeal against an Olympic ban for missing three drugs tests, giving hope to Christine Ohuruogu and Tim Don.

A British Olympic Association panel cleared Peter Cousins to compete at future Olympic Games because of mitigating circumstances.

Athlete Ohuruogu and world triathlon champion Don are also appealing Olympic bans after missing three tests.

But the BOA said Cousins' case does not guarantee their bans will be lifted.

BOA chief Simon Clegg said: "It is worth noting that the panel has very clearly stated that the facts of this case do not provide an automatic read across to cases in the future.

"Athletes must be fully aware of their obligations as part of either the national or international testing pool."

Ohuruogu, the Commonwealth 400m champion, submitted her appeal against her one-year and Olympic ban in October.

The 22-year-old, who blamed missing three out-of-competition tests on a change to her training schedule, described her Olympic ban as "completely out of line".

BOA chief executive Simon Clegg
BOA chief Simon Clegg insists Cousins' case does not set a precedent

Don has also appealed against his Olympic ineligibility but is not appealing against his three-month ban.

The 28-year-old fell foul of a new system which requires athletes to update an online database to determine their availability for testing.

Both Ohuruogu and Don were considered real medal prospects for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Cousins was banned in January for missing three routine doping tests and appealed on the grounds that his offence was minor.

The BOA panel rejected that claim but did agree there were significant mitigating circumstances.

The appeals panel said at the time of the missed tests there were "technological teething problems and some understandable confusion".

However, a BOA statement continued: "The panel emphasised that no athletes should assume that any of these points on their own would restore Olympic eligibility in the future."

SEE ALSO
World champion Don rocked by ban
13 Oct 06 |  Triathlon
Don to appeal against Olympic ban
14 Oct 06 |  Triathlon
Ohuruogu submits drugs ban appeal
11 Oct 06 |  Athletics
Ohuruogu is hit by one-year ban
15 Sep 06 |  Athletics


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