One chance

PLAYERS found failing tests for performance enhancement drugs and other illicit drugs such as marijuana and crystal methamphetamine or “ice” twice will not be allowed to play football in Fiji.

Fiji Football Association (Fiji FA) chief executive officer Mohammed Yusuf said they were upholding the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) goal of wanting football to be free of performance enhancement drugs.

He said they had begun with marijuana urine tests yesterday.

They would be conducting on other stronger substances such as ice in the upcoming 2017 INKK Mobile Battle of the Giants (BOG) tournament in Labasa.

“We started with marijuana urine test. But for BOG will be for ice and all the other stuff,” Yusuf said.

The tournament is expected to begin on July 14 and would go on until July 17.

Yusuf said they would be taking players to task if they were found positive on any of the illegal substances.

About 20 players from four respective senior teams Nasinu, Navua, Tailevu/Naitasiri and Tavua had their urine tested after their matches at the Fiji FA headquarters yesterday.

“If any are found positive, straight away one month suspension from 30 days to 45 days then after that they will go for retest and if found positive again, then their football career is finished,” Yusuf said.

He said the players were not picked because of odd behavioural patterns during their match ups, but rather they were randomly selected is something similar to that of a lottery.

He said it would be a costly affair trying to get as much players tested.

“Marijuana urine test costs about $30 per person and all the other tests $80 for each person.”

Yusuf confirmed that they were being assisted by the Fiji Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee (FASANOC).

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