• Athletics

Ohuruogu: Ban dopers for life

ESPN staff
July 17, 2013
Christine Ohuruogu believes athletes have no excuse for allowing banned substances into their bodies © Getty Images

Former Olympic champion Christine Ohuruogu has added her voice to the growing number of athletes and administrators calling for life-time bans for proven drug cheats.

Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell, the two fastest 100m sprinters in the world in 2013, were both revealed to have failed doping tests on Sunday, just weeks before the IAAF World Championships in Moscow.

And Ohuruogu, who was handed a one-year ban in 2006 for missing three out-of-competition tests, says that athletes have no excuses for allowing illegal performance-enhancing drugs to enter their bodies.

"I think that is the way we have to go," Ohuruogu told BBC Radio 5Live. "We all know, we are all experienced now and there is no reason to be caught with a banned substance, absolutely none.

"So if you are found to be taking it, that has to be the rule across the world, it has to be a standardised rule so that everyone knows this is the punishment if you decide to go ahead and cheat."

Despite this latest blow to the sport's credibility, Ohuruogu, who heads to the World Championships hoping to regain the 400m title she last claimed in 2007 before taking Olympic gold a year later in Beijing, believes that athletics will survive the scandal.

"It's really disappointing, because it's a sport we all love doing and taking part in," Ohuruogu said. "We've all cried, we've laughed, we've hurt ourselves, we've all done this for the sport we love.

"You worry how much this threatens the sport and the survival of it, but I think good will win and the sport is bigger than the stories coming out."

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