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Olympic hurdles champion banned for whereabouts mix-up

Olympic hurdles champion banned for whereabouts mix-up

Rollins, who took Olympic gold in the 100-meter hurdles a year ago at Rio 2016, passed 16 drugs tests in 2016, though has received the minimum suspension that is required after what is known as three whereabout failures.

The 25-year-old American, who also won the gold medal at the 2013 International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships, was not available for three tests between April and September last year.

Rollins successfully submitted to eight in-competition and as many out-of-competition tests across 2016.

But she also was marked unavailable for testing three times past year, which under the world anti-doping code counts as a drug test failure. As a result, Rollins' competitive results obtained on and subsequent to 27 September 2016, the date of her third whereabouts failure, have been disqualified and any medals, points, and prizes are forfeited.

Two of the missed tests came after she won Olympic gold.

After USADA's initial ruling, Rollins took her case to an arbitration panel, which delivered what her attorneys called the minimum penalty allowable. But it will prevent her from competing at the world championships in London this August. The others were in September 2016 when she forgot to update her details, first when she was travelling for a parade of honour in her hometown and then when she went to Washington to meet the then president Barack Obama.

The missed tests were indeed Rollins's fault, but her mistakes were exacerbated by a confusing system. But she neglected to remove a 60-minute time slot in effect where she was supposed to be at home so USADA could show up to test her. Rollins said she thought selecting the competition would also remove the 60-minute time period where she was supposed to be at home.

"This is a first offense, she had been frequently tested for years, and she has a flawless drug-free record, both in and out-of-competition", the panel said of Rollins. This is a very unpleasant experience, but I am able to see where errors were made.

"It is with my deepest regrets that I will have to miss the 2017 outdoor season", Rollins said in a statement.


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