Tracey Crouch has stepped down from the WADA Foundation Board ©Getty Images

British Sports Minister Tracey Crouch has resigned from her position on the World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) Foundation Board as a result of Brexit.

A spokesperson for WADA confirmed to insidethegames that Crouch, who was appointed to the organisation's ruling body at the start of last year, had "voluntarily stepped down" from her role earlier this month.

The 42-year-old made the decision "to make way for an alternative European Union (EU) representative to serve the remaining period of her three-year term", the spokesperson added.

Crouch's resignation comes into effect immediately and she has already been removed from the list of the 38 Foundation Board members on the WADA website.

Her departure comes as a direct consequence of Britain's decision to leave the EU in June of last year.

Crouch was serving as a Foundation Board member as a part of the EU Presidency Trio, which Britain have now withdrawn from due to Brexit.

"At the time of Minister Crouch's appointment, the United Kingdom formed part of what was the then future EU Presidency Trio and it was due to this status that the UK took up one of the EU's seats," WADA said in a statement sent to insidethegames.

It means she will not participate at the Foundation Board meeting in South Korea's capital Seoul on November 16, where the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) could be reinstated after a two-year period in exile following claims of institutionalised doping in the country.

WADA said a replacement for Crouch, who recently confirmed doping would not become a criminal offence in Britain, would be announced "shortly".

There is also one other vacancy for EU representatives on the Foundation Board, comprised equally of representatives from Governments and the Olympic Movement, and which is WADA's main decision-making body.

This is due to Maltese Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sport Chris Agius' term coming to an end in June of this year.

WADA has confirmed his position will also be announced soon.

The replacements for both are set to be discussed in Seoul.

The WADA Foundation Board meeting is due to hold a crucial meeting in Seoul next month ©Getty Images
The WADA Foundation Board meeting is due to hold a crucial meeting in Seoul next month ©Getty Images

Belgium's Philippe Muyters, the Flemish Minister for Work, Economy, Innovation and Sport, is the only representative from the member states of the EU currently on the Board.

The WADA Foundation Board, chaired by President Sir Craig Reedie, includes a number of International Olympic Committee (IOC) members.

IOC vice-president Uğur Erdener, Athletes' Commission chairperson Angela Ruggiero and her deputy, Frenchman Tony Estanguet, all sit on the Board.

Other notable members include founding WADA President and senior IOC member Richard Pound and Switzerland's Patrick Baumann.

Crouch's decision leaves Sir Craig and Adam Pengilly as the only Britons on the Foundation Board.

Its next meeting in Seoul will decide the fate of RUSADA, who claim they have done enough to be regain compliance.

RUSADA was declared non-compliant in November 2015 following the publication of the Independent Commission report into alleged state-sponsored doping in Russian athletics.

A Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport spokesperson told insidethegames: "Sports Minister Tracey Crouch was appointed to the WADA Foundation Board as the UK was due to hold the EU Presidency. 

"As we are no longer taking up the Presidency it is only right that she steps away from this role, allowing countries who hold, or will soon hold the Presidency, to take up the seat reserved for them. 

"The UK will, of course, continue to play a leading role in the international fight against doping in sport working closely with WADA, UNESCO and nations from around the world."