The opening of one of many sports international qualifying competitions hosted by Samoa
By Lagi Keresoma
APIA, SAMOA – THURSDAY 07 DECEMBER 2017: The case of a Samoan male rugby player who tested he was pregnant has prompted the Samoa Anti-Doping Association (SADA), to caution all athletes selected to represent Samoa in international tournaments to provide honest and correct information when filling required forms.
The rugby player submitted his wife’s urine to be tested as his.
“It was embarrassing because the urine tested positive that the rugby player was pregnant,” said SADA representative, Poasa Luatimi.
He said the rugby player was out drinking at night so when he went to be tested in the morning, he substituted his urine with that of his pregnant wife.
The warning came after past cases where some of the athletes failed to comply with SADA’s rules, and with upcoming international Games such as the Commonwealth Games next year and the Pacific Mini Games now in progress in Vanuatu.
In a separate case, an asthmatic player failed to put down his medical condition in the form. So when the leaders of Team Samoa realised that the player relied on the ventolin pump regularly, they decided to take the pump from him and let him play.
“It almost cost the player his life,” said SADA representative Dengue So’onalole.
During the regular SASNOC seminars, the athletes who are on medication are constantly warned to list all medication they are using on the forms and notify SADA.
“There is a form called the Therapeutic Use Exemption that should be filled in only by a doctor for those on medication,” said Dengue.
She also clarified that the Anti-Doping form is a legal form relaying all information about an athlete.
She also warned that tampering information could result in disqualification.
SADA was asked how a positive test could affect the chances of a team.
“It depends on the Sports Federation, what kind of sanctions they will deliver, whether it’s against the athlete involved or the whole team is disqualified,” said Dengue.
Athletes were also warned to be very careful about protein drinks provided by overseas coaches, that they should always seek a second opinion on that.
With the upcoming Commonwealth games in Australia next year and the 2019 Pacific Games in Samoa, SADA is working closely with the World Anti-Doping Association (WADA) to achieve clean games.