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Drug cheat marathon champ falls

Sports | Jan 11, 2018
China's marathon champion and Olympian Wang Jiali has been banned for eight years after failing a drugs test, and her career now seems over after a second violation.

Wang, 31, who won gold at last year's National Games, tested positive for the banned blood booster EPO during out-of-competition testing in August.

The Chinese Athletics Association also fined Wang 40,000 yuan (HK$48,000) and banned her coach, Lyu Qiang, for life.

Wang, who came 57th in the marathon at the 2012 London Olympics, was banned for two years in 2013 for a previous violation.

China's anti-doping agency uncovered 77 violations last year, calling it proof the country is stamping down on drug cheats ahead of next month's Winter Olympics in South Korea.

On that, China this week banned speed skater Shi Xiaoxuan for two years for failing a drugs test.

The agency conducted a record 17,000 tests last year.

"We have improved a lot, including testing methods," agency deputy head Chen Zhiyu said.

"As the workload continues to grow we have maintained a high level of accuracy in lab tests and ... found many more positive cases last year."

In fact, testing in 2017 returned 132 positive results, Xinhua News Agency said, but in 55 cases the athletes were not punished because investigators decided they had tested positive for clenbuterol due to food contaminated with the banned performance-enhancer.


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