Sports risk Olympic ban for not adopting anti-doping code

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Montreal, Sep 24: World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) chief Dick Pound warned countries and sports which do not comply with the anti-doping code could be banned from the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Pound, who will step down as WADA chairman at the end of the year, issued the threat during executive committee meetings today, saying all stakeholders have had enough time to achieve full code compliance.

The WADA chief would no reveal which sports or countries are under scrutiny but cautioned if they do not quickly get on board, they could be dropped from next summer's Olympics.

''We're not trying to embarrass anyone,'' Pound told reporters.

''We're just saying you have a long way to go and you should know that if we were deciding this in September 2007 you would be offside.

''If that happens again in 2008 it is a much more serious situation so get on with it.

''This preliminary report shows that while many organisations are actively engaged in the fight against doping with code-compliant programs, there are some lagging behind.

''Everyone should be aware that the consequences for not facing this danger head-on through code compliance can be far-reaching, including non-participation in the Olympics.'' WADA also used the meeting to unveil the 2008 banned substance list which includes a new class of substances called selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMS), a family of non-steroid molecules that have the same effect as anabolic steroids.

Intravenous infusions were also banned except in the treatment of acute medical conditions.

The executive committee also reviewed a draft of the new anti-doping code that will be put forward for approval at the third world conference on doping in sport scheduled for November in Madrid.

WADA will also submit a proposed budget of 26.5 million dollars (US), an increase of four per cent over last year's operating budget.

Reuters>

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