Chambers’ appeal against Olympic ban to be decided next week

July 9th, 2008 - 8:47 pm ICT by IANS  

London, July 9 (DPA) The Olympic fate of British sprinter Dwain Chambers will be decided next week by a High Court, it was announced Wednesday. The Court said that an injunction from Chambers’ lawyers against a British Olympic Association (BOA) ban is set for next week. A full hearing on the legality of the rule will not take place until 2009.

Citing unreasonable restraint of trade, Chambers has challenged a BOA by-law under which athletes who fail doping tests are banned from future Olympics.

If the injunction is granted, and he qualifies at the British trials on the weekend, Chambers would be eligible to compete at the Aug 8-24 Games in Beijing.

The sprinter was banned for two years and retroactively stripped of his 2002 European 100m title after testing positive for the designer drug THG in 2003. He returned to competition in 2006.

While the BOA rule has been in place for 16 years, the world governing athletics body IAAF has no such clause barring athletes from events after they have served doping bans.

The BOA rule is backed by active or retired athletes such as Sebastian Coe (head of the London 2012 Olympics organising committee, Kelly Holmes and Steve Redgrave.

Chambers is the first athlete challenging the BOA rule in itself.

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