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Farah cleared to compete again despite doping violation

leye aduloju /

Doubles world No. 1, Robert Farah has been cleared to return to competition by the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme less than a month after he was provisionally suspended for a doping offence.

Farah was charged with an Anti-Doping violation on 11 January and provisionally suspended on 21 January after his urine sample, supplied during an out-of-competition test in October last year, was found to contain the banned substance, Boldenone and its metabolite.

Boldenone is classed as a Non-Specified substance by the World Anti-Doping Agency, and positive tests for such substances attract a provisional mandatory suspension.

However, the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme has accepted Farah’s explanation of how the substance got into his system, and has cleared the Colombian to resume his career.

Farah, a reigning Wimbledon and US Open doubles champion, argued that the substance got into his system as a result of eating contaminated meat in his home country.

“Mr. Farah’s account of how the Boldenone entered his system was accepted and it was determined that he bears No Fault or Negligence for the violation”, read a statement from the International Tennis Federation.

“Where a finding of No Fault or Negligence is made, Programme Article 10.4 provides that any otherwise applicable period of Ineligibility shall be eliminated entirely”.

“Therefore, the Player’s provisional suspension is lifted with immediate effect, and he will not serve any period of Ineligibility for his violation. For the avoidance of doubt, Mr. Farah is eligible to resume competition immediately”.

Farah has amassed 34 doubles titles in an illustrious career, including a couple of majors at Wimbledon and the US Open last season. He has not played at all in 2020, and last featured at the Davis Cup Finals in Madrid in November last year.

“I would like to thank my family, my partner Sebas, my entire team, my sponsors Colsanitas, Mizuno, Hublot, Peugeot and Babolat, and all my friends and fans in Colombia and around the world that have supported me during this trying time to prove my innocence”, Farah said in a statement.

The decision of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme is subject to appeal by both WADA and Colombia’s National Anti-Doping Agency, NADO Colombia to the Court of Arbitration for Sports.