Essendon maintains that its players did not take any banned substances, despite captain Jobe Watson’s admission that he took AOD9604, a substance WADA declared banned.
Sources said the club would shortly issue a statement saying that its players had not taken any prohibited substances last year – the period under investigation by the AFL and ASADA.
Sources said the club doesn’t concede that any Essendon player took any substance that is WADA-prohibited.
In effect, Essendon is disputing that AOD9604, which WADA earlier this year said was banned, is in fact a prohibited substance.
— We did not take anything banned: Bombers (2013-Jun0-25) [The Age]
Once again we see an AFL Club wheel out the bullshit when discussing drugs in sport.
The players are responsible – it is a strict liability issue – when you are an athlete in this situation you know that it is YOUR responsibility to check before you medicate, it is made very clear to you that this is the case. Several decades ago you would be given a handbook with the approved products, and you were given contact numbers to call for products that were not listed, this search has now moved online and displays the very important notice “IMPORTANT: If you cannot find your search term on ‘Check Your Substances’ that does NOT mean that it is permitted in sport.” This is important, if it is not listed – don’t use it.
The WADA guidelines are clear, these athletes took banned substances. It is important to note that the requirement is for the drugs to banned for use in sport, not necessarily illegal (as suggested by some commentators). in this case AOD-9604 was not approved for human use and was banned for use by athletes (S0. 2013 Prohibited Substances and Methods List). Having taken these banned substances the players would have to expect a 2 year ban based on Article 10, the clubs would be expecting sanctions under Article 11.
In almost every other sport Jobe Watson would be banned immediately after admitting taking a banned drug. He can't possible play this week.—
David Culbert (@Culbert_Report) June 24, 2013
With WADA being clear that AOD-9604 is banned under the World Anti-Doping Agency code refusal to act on an ASADA finding would put the AFL in a precarious situation and have long lasting damage for their already slim credibility in this area.
I don’t see how how Jobe Watson can take the field having now admitted to breaching the WADA code.