British trio waiting on IAAF doping decision

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The Independent Online

A decision on doping allegations against the former Olympic 100 metres champion Linford Christie and two other British athletes, Doug Walker and Gary Cadogan, will not be announced until Monday at the earliest, a spokesman for the International Amateur Athletic Federation said yesterday.

A decision on doping allegations against the former Olympic 100 metres champion Linford Christie and two other British athletes, Doug Walker and Gary Cadogan, will not be announced until Monday at the earliest, a spokesman for the International Amateur Athletic Federation said yesterday.

A three-man arbitration panel, appointed by the IAAF, has spent four days hearing evidence on the three athletes, who all tested positive for the anabolic steroid nandrolone. There has been widespread debate about nandrolone after suggestions that it can build up in the bloodstream through the intake of legal supplements.

All three declared their innocence and were cleared by the British federation, UK Athletics, but the IAAF maintained its suspensions internationally pending the arbitration hearing. The trio face a two-year ban if the hearing goes against them.

An IAAF spokesman, Giorgio Reineri, said the committee was considering the evidence: "I don't think it will be before Monday at the earliest," he said. "They finished hearing all the evidence yesterday morning and now they are discussing it."

In Christie's case, a suspension would be meaningless because the 40-year-old, a gold medallist in Barcelona in 1992, has been retired for the past three years. Christie, who is now a coach, tested positive for nandrolone while competing for fun at an indoor meet at Dortmund in February last year, and he has taken no part in the hearing. Walker, the European 200m champion, decided not to take part in the British Olympic trials last weekend, while the 400m hurdler Cadogan has retired.

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