What about drugs in sports then? Does anyone condone drugs in sport? Of course not! If I was on the World Anti-Doping Agency looking for people who were taking drugs in sport I’d take every cheating sportsman I find, lock them in a cage and throw away the key, unfortunately, that can’t happen, so we should do the next best thing – ban them for life. My outlook on the whole drugs in sport affair comes in the wake of many of our British sportsmen being tested positive for taking various types of drugs, such as Nandrolone and THG. In the past couple of months we have had the huge case on England international footballer Rio Ferdinand and his missing drugs test case, we have had Dwain Chambers, the European 100m record-holder, who was tested positive for THG and more recently we have had the Greg Rusedski case.
The British number two tennis player has tested positive for the banned drug nandrolone and in the past Ben Johnson tested positive after his world-record winning run at the at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Both Dwain Chambers and Greg Rusedski deny taking the drugs but both could face serious consequences if they are actually found guilty after their appeal. Of course as a supporter of British sports I hope they are both found innocent and cleared of the charges made against them, but if they are found guilty there should be no lesser punishment than banning them from sport for life.
So what do these drugs actually do? Is there any need for taking them? Well Designer steroid is the phrase the world has been waiting for. This is not a pathetic case of a poor little sportsman with the wrong cough medicine, No, THG, or Tetrahydrogestrinone for short, has every indication of being a drug specially prepared for athletes who wish to gain an unfair advantage over the rest. Tetrahydrogestrinone is a banned steroid which has been tweaked by chemists to make it undetectable by normal dope tests. Anabolic steroids can improve the body’s capacity to train and compete at the highest level. They reduce the fatigue associated with training and the time required to recover after physical exertion. They also promote the development of muscle tissue in the body, with an associated increase in strength and power. Doesn’t sound very fair does it?
Nandrolone is an anabolic steroid that has recently caused a great deal of controversy, after a number of big name sportsmen and women have tested positive for the drug. Most athletes argue that their body is producing the drug, or that something went wrong with food supplements they had taken. The drug known as nandrolone is an anabolic steroid which is a muscle building chemical. It occurs naturally in the human body but only in small quantities and a limit of 2 ng per ml of urine is the maximum concentration thought possible to occur in the human body. If this is exceeded the drug test is considered positive.
Since some samples given by athletes have shown levels up to 100 times higher than this, it seems pretty obvious to me and I am sure it will to most, if not all of you, that it is the drug causing these excess levels as opposed to the pathetic excuses most athletes give! The drugs actual purpose is to increase muscle mass and give extra energy to the body, that is why this drug is most commonly found in athletes competing in running events. Gymnastics and weight lifting. The drug also has some unwanted side-effects such as increased body hair and aggressive behaviour. So you know the next time you see King-Kong in the starting blocks at the beginning of a 100 metre race, call FRANK!
So we do see why some athletes feel they do have to take the drugs. It is essentially to give them better performance in the sport they participate in. It is cheating! And it robs other athletes of their childhood dreams, dreams they have worked hard on their whole lives, dreams that have just been taken away from them by some idiot who is stupid enough to take the drugs and fool the world on how good they are. An example of this was in the Seoul Olympics in 1988 when Ben Johnson ran the 100 metres in 9.79 seconds making him at the time the fastest human on the planet. He robbed Carl Lewis a gold medal and at the time the current world record holder, our very own Linford Christie, a Silver medal.
Only 62 hours after winning the race Olympic officials entered Ben Johnson’s room and rightfully stripped the cheat of his gold medal and handed it to Carl Lewis and the silver to Linford Christie and then later exposed the world to the events that had occurred, but the damage had already been done, Carl Lewis was devastated on the matter and was quoted saying this “I’ve missed out on standing on the rostrum and seeing my country’s flag raised, I will never get that moment back”. Ben Johnson was only banned for two years and once he came back from his ban he was once again caught and found positive for taking performance enhancing drugs. Why wasn’t he banned for life in the first place? In my opinion once a cheat, always a cheat; there should have been no coming back for Ben Johnson. He was once again in the headlines last summer after he accepted a three month job to train Libyan dictator Muammer Gaddafi’s son, a soccer player who also tested positive a third time for a drug, coincidence? I doubt it.
In my opinion there should be no lesser penalty for taking drugs than a life time ban. No excuses, no chances and life should mean life. If we get tough on drug taking and its causes, we’d have a chance of winning the battle; if we don’t we’re fighting with one hand tied behind our backs. I urge the World Anti-Doping Agency to look at there stance on the matter, because I believe this could be an ugly time for sport as an ever increasing number of athletes are accused of taking performance enhancing drugs; the image of sport in the UK is deteriorating. It’s hard enough competing against naturally gifted people, let alone those who are pumped up on drugs. The bottom line is, there is no place for cheats in sport.