Jemima Sumgong: Four-Year Doping Ban For Olympic Marathon Champion

Olympic marathon winner Jemima Sumgong has been banned for four years after her claim she was taking EPO for an ectopic pregnancy was rejected. Sumgong told a Kenyan law court she was given the banned substance in hospital, but her paperwork was deemed to have been provided by "an imposter" and her claims labelled as "not authentic". She also said her husband did not know about the pregnancy because of the "taboo" surrounding the condition.

Sumgong was first suspended in April. EPO, or erythropoietin, is used commonly to boost the production of red blood cells and encourage more oxygen flow in the body. The hearing - brought to Kenya's Sports Disputes Tribunal by the country's anti-doping agency (Adak) - ruled that 32-year-old Sumgong owned up to her "unfortunate offence and unintended mistake".

However, the chief executive of Adak told BBC Sport that Sumgong - who also tested positive for a banned substance in 2012 - was "not cooperative and did not give any information". "She has received the sanction she deserves," Japhter Rugut said. "If the athlete had maybe assisted in the investigations and in revealing what happened, then there could have been a consideration to repeal the sentence. There was no such assistance from her. "We believe in the interest of justice. This had to be done. It will become a deterrent for anybody who may believe in doing this [doping]."

Sumgong, the first Kenyan woman to win Olympic marathon gold, was officially banned on 31 October but it will be backdated to 3 April. It means she will not be able to defend her title at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Courtesy:BBC

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