GB pick Chambers despite "unanimous opposition"
UKA's selection committee issued a statement along with the announcement of the team which made it clear that Chambers had only been selected because of the athlete's threat to take legal action against the governing body if he was not included.india Updated: Feb 12, 2008 21:40 IST
Dwain Chambers on Tuesday won his battle to be included in Great Britain's team for next month's World Indoor Championships in Valencia, Spain, despite "unanimous opposition" among the team selectors.
Chambers earned his place in the 60m race by winning the national trials on Sunday in a time of 6.55sec.
But his inclusion in the squad had been opposed by UK Athletics (UKA) because of the sprinter's past use of performance enhancing drugs, which earned him a two-year ban between 2004 and 2006.
In an unprecedented move, UKA's selection committee issued a statement along with the announcement of the team which made it clear that Chambers had only been selected because of the athlete's threat to take legal action against the governing body if he was not included.
"The committee was unanimous in its desire not to select Dwain," the statement said.
"Taking him to the World Indoors deprives young, upwardly mobile committed athletes of this key development opportunity."
Under the rules of the British Olympic Association, Chambers will not be eligible for selection for the Olympic games in Beijing in August, and the selectors' statement added: "Our World Class Performance Programme is focused on achievement at Olympic and world level.
"On this basis, it is extremely frustrating to leave young athletes at home; eligible for Beijing, in possession of the qualifying standard and committed to ongoing participation in a drug-free sport.
"In contrast, we have to take an individual whose sudden return, especially when considered against his previous actions and comments, suggests that he may be using the whole process for his own ends.
"Unfortunately, the committee felt that the selection criteria pertaining to the winner of the Trials, coupled with the manner of Dwain's performance, left them no room to take any other decision.
"We wish all the selected athletes well at the event, but will certainly explore ways in which future selections can be made to match the true 'spirit' of our sport."
Chambers, 29, completed a two-year doping ban in 2006, after testing positive for the designer steroid tetrahydrogestrinone (THG).
After serving his ban, he initially tried to pursue a career in American Football but later decided to return to the track. He now insists that he has learned from his past mistakes and is drug-free.