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Page last updated at 14:41 GMT, Wednesday, 26 August 2009 15:41 UK

Warrior Hock hit by two-year ban

Gareth Hock
Hock last played in June helping England overcome the French

Wigan Warriors and England forward Gareth Hock has been suspended for two years after two urine samples tested positive for cocaine.

His samples were found to contain traces of a cocaine metabolite after the game with Salford on 5 June.

The second rower, 25, decided not to appeal against the ban and can return on 23 June 2011.

The Great Britain man's last match was for England in their 66-12 win over France in Paris on 13 June.

At the time of his B sample testing positive, a Wigan statement said it "reiterates its position of deploring and condemning drug use in sport including using so-called recreational drugs".

The usual punishment, in line with World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) regulations, is a two-year suspension.

Hock signed a new contract in May 2008, keeping him at the club until 2011.

He played in three of England's games at the 2008 World Cup and was a member of Great Britain's Tri-Nations touring squad in 2006.

Wigan-born Hock came up through the club's academy system and was named Super League's Young Player of the Year in 2003.

Knee ligament and shin problems kept him out for 15 months at the end of 2006, while he made only 19 appearances for the Warriors in 2008 because of injury and suspension.

A year ago, Hock was banned for five matches for tugging the arm of a referee during a match against Huddersfield.

This latest announcement comes in the same year as rugby union star Matt Stevens, of England and Bath, was banned for two years after admitting a cocaine addiction.



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