Inside Lines: Oscar Pistorius could face drug check over herbal 'sex aid' remedy

 

The substance found in the home of Oscar Pistorius following the fatal shooting of Reeva Steenkamp may well be performing-enhancing. But in the bedroom, rather than on the athletics track.

Among the many curiosities of a case in which the Paralympic star has now been bailed on a charge of murder, police said originally they discovered testosterone and syringes but subsequently it has been revealed as a "herbal remedy" called Testocompasutium co-enzyme. This is marketed as testis compositum and is used as a temporary relief for symptoms associated with male sexual deficiency.

The pharmaceutical description of it is as "a homeopathic male performance/reproductive system enhancer for problems such as lack of stamina, nocturnal emissions and male hormone imbalance". Athletically it is also believed to enhance energy by increasing the heart rate. But it does not appear on the Wada (World Anti-Doping Agency) proscribed list, while UK Anti-Doping say they have never been required to test for it.

Among its derivatives is the over-the-counter CoQ10, often called "the energy sparkplug" because it converts glucose to energy. It is sold in healthfood stores and 200mg capsules can be bought for £21.95 for 60 online. It is too early to say if the substances found in the home of the double amputee would classify as illegal performance enhancers as they are still being tested. But the discovery of such drugs would be enough for the authorities to act, even though Pistorius was tested during the 2012 Games.

Wada said: "Substances were alleged to have been found at Pistorius's house and we will discuss this with South Africa's anti-doping organisation – the South Africa Institute for Drug Free Sport – after the hearing."

DeGale's TV ace

It may seem that the 2008 Olympic gold medallist James DeGale is now confined to boxing's backwaters, as his last fight was in Hull and his next, on 23 March against Argentinian Pablo Farias, is at the Bluewater Shopping Centre in Kent. But he has something super-middleweight rivals would give their right hook for: terrestrial television. DeGale, 27, gets live exposure on Channel 5.

According to his new promoter Mick Hennessy "Chunky" is "the most talented super-middleweight in the world".

Doubtless Carl Froch, who meets Dane Mikkel Kessler in a title unification bout in May, is one who would demur, but surely what all agree on is that the most talented fighter around is the flash, brash two-weight world champion Adrien Broner, who so ruthlessly despatched British lightweight Gavin Rees last week.

Added to a preening vanity, the breathtaking ability of the new "Cincinnati Kid", 23, is such that he can sustain boxing for the next decade. He has a tongue as fast as his fists. Asked what is his best shot he smooths his hair and replies: "When someone takes a picture of me."

Grey-Thompson v Warner

Applications for two of the top jobs in British sports administration – UK Sport and Sport England – closed last week. Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson has gone for both, and is likely to land one of them.

But she may face a serious rival in Ed Warner, currently chair of British Athletics, who played a major part in securing the 2017 world championships for London and now heads the organising committee.

a.hubbard@independent.co.uk

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