Runners from Kenya, Nigeria banned from Olympic races

By AT editor - 31 July 2021 at 1:08 pm
Runners from Kenya, Nigeria banned from Olympic races

Two African athletes are now suspended from further Olympics competition in Tokyo following the results of testing for banned substances.

Kenyan runner Mark Otieno tested positive for the steroid methasterone, according to media outlet The Standard, and was pulled from competition in the 100-meter men’s race on Saturday. He has denied using any performance enhancing drugs and requested a repeat test.

Waithaka Kioni, head of Kenya’s Olympic teams, said the sample was taken by the International Testing Agency (ITA) on Wednesday. He confirmed the test result and said Otieno will have a second sample done.

“NOC Kenya and the Management of Team Kenya does not condone doping,” Kioni added.

The news about Otieno comes one day after Nigerian runner Blessing Okagbare was removed from competition, also because of a positive result from a test sample taken on July 19.

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) said Okagbare tested positive for human growth hormone, which is on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) list of banned substances.

Okagbare was removed from competition ahead of the 100-meter women’s semifinals set for Saturday night. She was the first athlete to leave the Tokyo 2020 Olympic events because of a doping violation.

On a more positive note, South African swimmer Tatjana Schoenmaker won a gold medal in the women’s 200-meter breaststroke while setting a world record of 2 minutes, 18.95 seconds in the event. Schoenmaker also won a silver medal in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke.

Tunisian swimmer Ahmed Hafnaoui earlier won a gold medal during an upset performance in the men’s 400-meter freestyle race. Tunisia’s Mohamed Khalil Jendoubi won a silver medal in taekwondo.

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