BWF names Lee in scandal

Source:Agencies-Global Times Published: 2014-11-12 0:08:10

World No.1 shuttler ‘provisionally’ suspended

Badminton's governing body confirmed Tuesday that Lee Chong Wei has been provisionally suspended "due to an apparent anti-doping regulation violation," identifying him for the first time after weeks of reports naming the world No.1.

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) said the ­Malaysian star was barred from competing until its panel determines whether he has ­committed a violation, after he failed a drugs test at the BWF World Championships in ­August.

"The world-governing body has imposed this suspension due to an Adverse Analytical Finding of a sample taken at the BWF World Championships in August," the BWF said in a statement.

"The BWF has referred the matter to the BWF Doping Hearing Panel and, in due course, the Chair of the Panel will set the time, date and location of a hearing.

"The Panel will determine whether or not the athlete has committed an anti-doping regulation violation."

On Saturday, the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) confirmed that one of their players had tested positive for the banned anti-inflammatory agent dexamethasone but withheld the individual's identity pending an appeal.

Lee, who is Malaysia's most prominent male athlete, has said that he "never cheated" and will fight to clear his name after a second test last week confirmed the banned anti-­inflammatory dexamethasone in his sample.

If found guilty of doping, he faces a suspension of up to two years, spelling the end of his career.

In an interview with his friend and sports blogger Satwant Singh Dhaliwal published Saturday, Lee said the positive result was a "mystery."

The 32-year-old said he received dexamethasone during stem cell treatment for a thigh injury in July but had passed an out-of-competition test before the world championships, where he lost in the final to China's Chen Long.

"I never cheated nor will I ever rely on banned ­substances," Lee said. "There are so many unanswered questions, and I hope to clear my name soon."

The affair has shocked the sport, which has seen few doping scandals.

Malaysian officials have said they believe Lee is innocent and will do all they can to help him present his case.

Despite topping the sport's rankings for years, Lee has ­never won a world title or Olympic gold, often crashing out against Chinese star Lin Dan in the finals.

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