August 11 - Jamaica's Steve Mullings, the world's third ranked 100 metres this year and one of the favourites for the World Championships in Daegu later this month, has allegedly tested positive for banned performance-enhancing drugs and is now facing being kicked out of the sport for life, it has been reported today.
The Jamaica Gleaner has reported that Mullings, who is also ranked fifth in the world this year for 200m and is a training partner of American Tyson Gay, tested positve for an unspecified banned masking agent.
Mullings, who has run 9.80sec this year, allegedly tested positive at the Jamaican Championships held between June 23 and 26 this year, the Jamaica Gleaner reported.
The 28-year-old had made an eye-catching improvement this year, lowering his personal best for 100m from 10.01.
If the positive test is confirmed, Mullings faces being banned from the sport for life as it would be his second offence.
He also tested positive for testosterone at the 2004 Jamaican Championships after winning the 200m and was dropped from Jamaica's team for the Olympics in Athens.
But he returned and won a silver medal in the 4x100m relay at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka.
Mullings (pictured below far right) was then part of the Jamaican team alongside Usain Bolt and Asafa Powell that won the relay gold medal at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin.
The Jamaica Gleaner reported that they were unable to contact Mullings for comment.
The Executive Director of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCo), Dr Patrece Charles-Freeman, in the meantime, said she was unable to say anything.
"I have no comment on the matter," she said.
"There is no way JADCo can comment at this time."
Mullings is represented by British 200m record holder John Regis.
Regis was also the manager of Britain's Dwain Chambers when he tested positive for a cocktail of banned substances in 2003 and was suspended for two years.
Jamaica have established themselves as one of the strongest athletics nations in the world thanks to their sprinters, led by Bolt, the triple Olympic and world champion.
But their athletes have been involved in a series of drugs scandals.
On the eve of the 2009 World Championships, five athletes tested positive for a stimulant at the Jamaican Championships and were suspended for three months.
They included Yohan Blake, who last week won the 100m in the Diamond League meeting at Crystal Palace in 9.89.
Last year, world and Olympic 100-metre champion Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce tested positive for the painkiller Oxycodone and was subsequently banned for six months.
Her ban ended in January this year.
Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]