Olympics: Chinese anti-doping official warns athletes

July 24th, 2012 - 6:09 pm ICT by IANS  

London, July 24 (IANS) A Chinese anti-doping official warned the country’s athletes to avoid “accidental mistakes” during their stay in London for the Olympic Games.

Three thousand tests had been planned for athletes who were expected to make it to London at the beginning of the year and the programme will draw to a close by the end of July as all 396 athletes leave for London, reports Xinhua.

China Anti-Doping Agency’s deputy head Zhao Jian was confident of sending a clean team to the Games with a strict doping-control programme which helped catch Rome swimming world champion Li Zhesi in March for cheating.

“Generally speaking, the situation is good. After all these years of hard work in conducting doping tests and education, we think athletes are well aware of the risk of cheating,” said Zhao. “I am confident that we can keep our zero record in London.”

China has been free from doping scandals at the Olympics since Atlanta 1996. But Zhao admitted his worries that some athletes might “make mistakes”.

“They know they must not use banned drugs but that’s not enough to avoid positive tests. They also need to guard against accidental mistakes,” Zhao said.

“They should report their whereabouts and use safe nutrition. I am a little worried that some of them just don’t care about these things. I want to tell them: once you are found positive, you will be punished, no matter you violate the regulation wittingly or unwittingly,” he added.

Zhao also revealed that the newly-adopted biological passport had been used this year.

“It has been used for three months so I can’t tell you too much about the program. But I believe it will help a lot in doping control,” he said.

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