By Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw
Christian Coleman, the 100 metres world champion, has been banned for two years for missing three drugs tests.
This means that he will not be eligible to participate in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics, which have been postponed until next year.
Three failures, within a period of twelve months, under the anti-doping ‘whereabouts rule’, can result in a two-year ban from competition.
Investigations into these missed tests do not suggest that he has taken any banned substance(s), and Coleman has said that he would be “willing to take a drug test every day for the rest of my career” to prove his innocence.
However, the Athletics Integrity Unit has described his attitude to his anti-doping obligations as “entirely careless, perhaps even reckless.”
It has been announced that Coleman, who is 24 years old, will appeal against the ban to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, Switzerland.
It will be interesting to see what the CAS makes of this unfortunate matter, which has been described as a blow to the reputation of athletics in the case of such a high-profile athlete!