Olympic steeplechase champion Ruth Jebet banned for four years after testing positive for EPO
- Jebet put forward contradictory explanations while clarifying how the banned substance entered her system.
What’s the story?
2016 Rio Olympics gold medalist Ruth Jebet, who represents Bahrain, received a four-year ban on Wednesday after testing positive for a prohibited substance.
In case you did not know
The 23-year-old Kenya-born long-distance runner was the world record holder in the 3000 metres steeplechase until she tested positive. She had also won a gold medal each at the 2014 World Junior Championships and the Asian Championships in 2013.
The heart of the matter
Jebet tested positive for EPO, a performance-enhancing drug, in a sample that she presented in December 2017. EPO has been banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the International Olympic Council (IOC).
A disciplinary panel said that while clarifying how the prohibited substance entered her system, Jebet came up with a series of contradictory explanations. According to the verdict, she asserted that the drug was injected to her by someone she claimed to be her” husband or boyfriend” and at other times, she claimed that she thought the substance was either vitamins or pain relievers. On another occasion, the steeplechase specialist alleged that her physiotherapist gave her wrong information about the substance.
The disciplinary panel, thereby, found her accusations to be “bizarre” with "unresolved questions".
The judgement comes after Bahrain’s Track Federation ceased to provide funds for Jebet’s defence. Meanwhile, Jebet can appeal against the conviction to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Published 05 Mar 2020, 11:21 IST