Discus thrower Seema Antil, who mysteriously returned from Muscat last week, apparently for testing positive for a banned steroid, faces a life ban.
It is learnt she returned positive for testosterone in an out-of-competition test held at the Dope Control Centre here last month. With the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) keeping a constant vigil to crack down on dope cheats not just in India but also abroad, it was difficult for Seema to duck the authorities and compete in Doha.
The WADA says out-of-competition tests (read pre-departure tests here) are allowed if they comply with the international standards and procedures.
However, there is a rider to it: “Possible anti-doping rule violations must be followed by proper sanctioning.”
Not just that, WADA has said that it is in constant touch with the Indian sporting authorities and the laboratory regarding this particular issue (pre-departure tests). In Seema's case, if she fails to clear her name after all procedures are complete then she will be banned for life.
This is the second time Seema has failed a dope test. She was stripped of gold after returning positive for banned stimulant ephedrine at the junior World Championships in Santiago in 2000.