Rhys Pugsley has been banned form all sport for eight years ©Getty Images

Twenty-one-year-old Welsh international rugby league player Rhys Pugsley has been suspended from all sport for eight years after committing a second anti-doping rule violation (ADRV).

Pugsley, from Newport, tested positive for anabolic steroid nandrolone following an out-of-competition test in February 2016.

At the time of the test, Pugsley was already serving a two-year ban for steroid use which was committed in April 2014. 

The first failure came when he played for Wigan's academy.

As a result of the player committing a second doping violation, a ban of eight years was imposed under Article 10.7.1(c) of The World Anti-Doping Code.

This comes shortly after English rugby league player Nathan Darby was  banned for four years by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) for failing a drugs test.

Rhys Pugsley tested positive for anabolic steroid nandrolone ©Getty Images
Rhys Pugsley tested positive for anabolic steroid nandrolone ©Getty Images

Nicole Sapstead, UKAD's chief executive, admitted in May that there was a “worrying trend” of youngsters in the sport using steroids. 

A number of grassroots rugby players have now failed tests and been banned.

“Having made his Wales debut at the age of 18, Rhys Pugsley had a bright future ahead of him in rugby league," Sapstead said. 

"But Rhys has single-handedly destroyed that promising career as a result of this second violation.

"Rhys’ conscious choice to continue to take performance enhancing substances, whilst he was already serving a ban, has rightly been met with a further tough sanction. 

"We take this type of violation with the utmost seriousness and our message is clear - there is no place in sport for those who consciously dope." 

Pugsley is banned from all sport from March 3, 2016, until midnight on March 2, 2024.