China bans nine coaches over drugs

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The Independent Online
Chinese authorities have banned nine coaches, including five from the country's swimming squad, for involvement in drug-taking, officials said in Peking yesterday. The coaches were banned for a year for their role in 31 doping cases in China in 1994. Eleven athletes tested positive for banned performance-enhancing drugs at last year's Asian Games in Hiroshima.

The International Swimming Federation and the Olympic Council of Asia this week decided there was not enough evidence to say there was organised drug-taking in China, but the swimming world body said greater testing was needed and may change its regulations after the Chinese failures.

The five swimming coaches were banned for their role in the drugs taken by seven swimmers who failed tests in Hiroshima. Two of the swimmers later banned for two years were the world champions, Yang Aihua and Lu Bin. Two of the swimming coaches, Zhou Ming and Wang Lin, also dealt with two other world champions, Le Jingyi and He Cihong. The other three were named by the Chinese Swimming Assocation as Chen Qin, Yao Ying and Mo Zhengjie.

Four other sports federations also took ac tion following drug failures. Others named were Liu Shuqian, the coach to the national women's 400 metres hurdles champion Han Qing; Li Hongqing, the coach to the cyclist, Wang Yan; and Wang Boqing, the coach to the canoeists Zhang Lei and Qiu Suoren.