Warne caught in intelligence-based testing, says ASDA

Published: Saturday, February 15, 2003, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney: Shane Warne's drug test last month was not a random sampling but an "intelligence-based" testing undertaken after analysing high-risk factors, the Australian Sports Drug Agency (ASDA) has said. "We don't test athletes blindly, which implies that Warne's drug test was not a random sampling," ASDA chief executive John Mendoza said.

According to Mendoza, ASDA has identified certain high-risk factors including age, rapid recovery from injury, panic and change in body shape. "All of these fitted the Warne profile when he was tested in January," he was quoted as saying in local media. Four cricketers were tested on the day, Mendoza revealed. "I'm not saying the tests were targeted but clearly we take into consideration the high-risk period for athletes in any sport and the period leading up to a major competition is a high-risk period. These tests therefore occurred in a period where we have great focus, the lead-up to World Cup," he said.

Intelligence-based testing plays a major role in ASDA's programming - monitoring unusual improvements in performance and acting on information received. However, Mendoza gave no indication this applied in Warne's case. Warne, who tested positive for diuretics in a test on January 22, returned from the World Cup in South Africa in a huff and now faces a drugs tribunal. Warne is expected to be officially told of his 'B' sample drug results on Monday. The drugs hearing is likely to be held at the end of next week.

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