Exclusive: Sri Lankan boxer must follow the rules claim CGF

Wednesday, 17 November 2010
By Tom Degun

Manju_Wanniarachchi_with_hands_crossedNovember 17 - The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) have responded defiantly to threats from Sri Lankan boxing officials that they will launch legal action in an attempt to save the gold medal won by Manju Wanniarachchi in New Delhi last month despite it being confirmed that he had tested positive for banned anabolic steroids.

The CGF claim they are simply being "consistent" with their Anti Doping Rules after an analysis of the B-sample given by Wanniarachchi and conducted in the Indian capital on Friday (November 12) confirmed the results of the first test and that his urine sample contained nandrolone.

The 30-year-old from Kandy, who became a national hero by winning the first Commonwealth Games gold medal by a Sri Lankan boxer for 72 years when he beat Wales' Sean McGoldrick in the bantamweight final, now faces the prospect of being stripped of the title he won and being banned for two years in a move which could keep him out of the London 2012 Olympics.

But Amateur Boxing Association of Sri Lanka (ABA) have claimed the results of the tests should be annulled because of doubts over how the procedure was conducted. 

But CGF spokesperson told insidethegames: "The CGF is, consistent with its Anti Doping Rules, following due process, the next step of which is the opportunity for the athlete to have a hearing on the matter before the Federation Court."

Earlier this month, a Sri Lankan delegation, led by Wanniarachchi's lawyer, forced the postponement of the testing of the B-sample because they allege the paperwork was not in order.

Sri Lankan officials claim that Wanniarachchi may have unknowingly taken the banned steroid when he consulted a physician several months ago.

Wales and are sure to be interested spectators in the case as if Wanniarachchi is stripped of gold, McGoldrick would be elevated to champion and Wales would rise two places from 15th to 13th in the final medal table - by virtue of most silver medals - leapfrogging Northern Ireland and Samoa who are currently 13th and 14th respectively.

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