New Delhi: India’s dope tainted quartermiler runners — Ashwini Akkunji, Sini Jose, Tiana Mary Thomas and Priyanka Panwar — can hope to take part in the Olympics as the Anti Doping Appeal Panel (ADAP) has upheld the one-year sanction imposed on them, making the athletes eligible for the 2012 London Olympic trials.
Akkunji and Jose were part of the women’s 4x400m relay team that won the gold medal at the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.
The sample of the four athletes was collected June 2011, but they were handed one-year ban sentence in December 2011. But if the length of their ban had started from the date they were handed the sentence, then they were sure to miss the trials.
A National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) disciplinary panel, headed by retired district judge Dinesh Daya, in December 2011, had sentenced the quartet of India’s top runners to a one-year ban after they had tested positive for banned steroids.
The runners then moved to the appeals panel against the ban that had ruled all of them out of Olympics.
The ADAP, however, offered the runners a relief by upholding the sanction but ruling that the ban tenure will start from the day their samples were collected, NADA said in a statement
Sini’s sample was collected June 12, 2011, Ashwini and Priyanka’s June 27, 2011, and Tiana Mary’s June 12 and 27.
According to ADAP, all the runners’s ban tenure will get over by the end of June making them eligible for the Games that would be held from July 27 to Aug 12.