UKAD ensures athletes undergo anti-doping education before every major Games ©UKAD

UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) has started its Pre-Games Clean Sport Education programme for an estimated 1,300 home nation athletes set to participate in the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The anti-doping organisation is working alongside four Commonwealth Games Agencies and Home Country Sports Councils to supply athletes and support staff from England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland with mandatory clean sport education.

All home nations' athletes, coaching staff and other types of athlete support personnel attending a major Games event are required to undergo clean sport education before competing under the guidance of the 2021 Clean Games Policy.

Participants ware due to be taught on a range of subjects including the risks of supplement use, testing procedures and the importance of checking medications.

"Education ahead of the Commonwealth Games is vital for athletes and their support personnel," said Jane Rumble, the chief executive of UKAD.

"It ensures they know their rights, responsibilities and what to expect when it comes to testing during the Games.

"Our education team aim to equip the many talented athletes heading to Birmingham 2022 with the knowledge needed to protect the integrity of their sport."

Squeaky, the UKAD’s clean sport mascot which launched ten years ago at London 2012, is anticipated to be present to every athlete once they complete the education course.

Squeaky is rebranded for every Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games ©UKAD
Squeaky is rebranded for every Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games ©UKAD

UKAD described Squeaky as "a symbol of athletes remaining committed to clean sport."

The duck - which is rebranded prior to every Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games to allow athletes to obtain unique editions - has once again undergone a makeover.

The new characteristics involve the stark Birmingham flag colours of blue, red and yellow and a canal boat inspired flower pattern on its front.

The design also has a heart to show the youth of Birmingham and a cocoa bean referring to the Cadbury’s factory.

"There is a huge amount of work that goes into preparing for a Commonwealth Games, and it’s not just about training physically, it’s about ensuring we as athletes dedicate time to learning about the clean sport processes and our responsibilities," said Jude Hamer, wheelchair basketball competitor and member of the Athlete Commission.

"It’s part of our jobs as athletes to ensure we don’t fall foul of the rules.

"I very much look forward to completing my pre-games education and to supporting the Squeaky campaign, which helps to open up conversations amongst sportspeople about the importance of clean sport education."

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games yesterday passed the 100 days to go milestone, with the competition set to open on July 28 and close on August 8.