London set to become most tested Games: WADA
Mumbai:The London Olympics is all set to go down in history as the most dope-tested Games with more than 6,000 samples expected to be analysed, the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) has said.
“These will be the most tested Games in Olympic history and doping athletes must know that they will be under severe scrutiny of anti-doping officials from the moment they set foot in the Olympic Village,” WADA president John Fahey said in a media statement from Montreal.
“The IOC and LOCOG (Games organising committee) have prepared an extensive anti-doping programme that will analyse up to 6,250 samples while the anti-doping authorities are already sharing intelligence to assist with target testing of athletes under suspicion,” he added.
Mr. Fahey said that WADA’s intention is to make the upcoming Games, starting on July 27, 2012 as clean as possible.
“I should also add that U.K. Anti-Doping is mandated to test athletes in training camps ahead of the Games and has also compiled much intelligence with the co-operation of anti-doping organisations worldwide.
“There has been a coherent effort to make London 2012 as ‘clean’ as possible and doping athletes should know that their chances of avoiding detection are the smallest they have ever been,” said Mr. Fahey after entreating dope cheaters to stay away from the quadrennial sporting spectacle.
“I say this in the clearest way possible: ‘If you are a doping athlete and you are planning to compete in London then you must withdraw from your Olympic team’
“Doping is cheating, plain and simple. And if you compete in London as a doped athlete then not only will you be cheating your fellow athletes, you will be cheating fans across the world, doing a disservice to your national flag and flouting the ideals of the Olympic Movement.
“A doping athlete cannot achieve success, it is a complete contradiction. Even if a doping athlete were to win a medal he or she would never be able to look at themselves in the mirror and say ‘well done, I deserved this’,” the WADA chief said.
“The Olympic Games is the absolute pinnacle for many athletes, and for them to train endlessly over a four-year period and then have their efforts belittled by a doping athlete, to me that is complete and utter betrayal of what sport stands for,” Mr. Fahey said.
The WADA president also applauded the efforts of the world’s anti-doping community in trying to identify doping athletes ahead of the Games, as well as the International Olympic Committee and Games organisers LOCOG for preparing a comprehensive anti-doping programme.
Despite the work of the world’s anti-doping community, Mr. Fahey stressed that ultimate responsibility lay with the athletes as to how free of doping London 2012 will be.
“Athletes are responsible for what they put into their bodies and for whether or not they choose to dope.
“The world’s anti-doping community can only do so much.
If every athlete decides not to dope then we will have a completely dope-free Games, that’s the simple reality. It is up to the athletes and I urge them to collectively take more responsibility for the sake of clean competition,” he said.
Mr. Fahey will be present at WADA’s pre-Olympic press conference at the Olympic Park on July 25, 2012 the agency informed.