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Commonwealth Games 2002
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Rugby 7's Tuesday, 30 July, 2002, 16:19 GMT 17:19 UK
Asselin dropped over drugs scare
Fred Asselin
Fred Asselin (right) played in the last Commonwealth Games
Rugby Canada have suspended Fred Asselin from their Commonwealth Games rugby sevens squad because of concerns he has taken a banned drug.

Asselin, who has played 10 times for the full Canadian side, is thought to have taken a painkiller containing a banned substance while suffering from toothache.

Gareth Rees, the new chief executive of Rugby Canada, said Asselin admitted he might have taken a banned substance during routine pre-Games testing.

At that point Rugby Canada turned the case over to the country's sporting drug control authorities to see whether a doping offence has taken place.

"We are trying to be helpful because (Asselin) came to us and we have been co-operative all along," said Rees.

In order to comply with International Rugby Board (IRB) regulations the player has been automatically suspended until the case has been resolved.

Second blow

The revelation comes less than a week after Canadian triathlete Kelly Guest was sent home from the Games after testing positive for nandrolone.

The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport revealed on Friday that Guest had tested positive at the ITU Triathlon World Cup event on 14 July in Edmonton.

The test result was marginally above the legal limit and Guest has requested that his B sample is also tested.

He will find out the results this week.

It is the second time in just over a week that rugby has been hit by a drugs-related controversy.

Australian controversy

Last week it was revealed that Australia winger Ben Tune was withdrawn from four Super 12 matches in March 2001 because of a drugs scare.

Tune was treated for an infected knee with probenecid, a drug designed to retain antibodies in the system.

The World Cup winner had already played two games for the Queensland Reds when it was discovered that there might be a problem.

The drug is on the IRB and International Olympic Committee's banned substance list and a positive test would result in a two-year ban.


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