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Fencer Chunni Lal Puts Blame on Viagra After Failing Doping Test

Fencer Chunni Lal Puts Blame on Viagra After Failing Doping Test

Indian fencer Chunni Lal has been banned for four years over the failed doping test.

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It is a common exercise for athletes to cook up excuses after they test positive for doping and fencer Chunni Lal did the same recently. The 20-year-old Chunni from Rajasthan's Bahroj, recently tested positive for Androstanolone, an endogenous anabolic steroid banned under World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) 2018 prohibited list. Chunni claimed that his sample returned positive because he took a medicine to improve his libido.

Chunni Lal admitted that he took Viagra a day before he was subjected to an out-of-competition test in July 2018. He gave the excuse when he was told to consult his lawyers after failing to convince the anti-doping disciplinary panel.

Chunni Lal of the Service Sports Control Board (SSCB), who is based in Army Sports Institute in Pune, has been suspended for four years.

Denying the charge, Chunni, in his initial defence, stated that he had only taken particular medicines prescribed by the Sports Authority of India (SAI), but after his sample B returned and still tested positive, he admitted to having taken Viagra.

In a statement, National Anti-Doping Agency said, "Somehow the panel was not convinced and gave an opportunity to the athlete to recollect and to reconsider his position in consultation with his advocate, as to whether he had received or was receiving treatment for a medical condition. After much hesitation, he admitted that a day before the dope test, he and his colleagues had consumed Viagra, purchased from a local chemist shop. However, he did not have an invoice of the purchased tablet so there was no way to ascertain the exact nature of the consumed tablet."

It further said, "...As Chunni Lal failed in the above criterion and indulged in unsportsmanlike behaviour he was found liable for sanctions which made him ineligible for a period of four years starting from March 2019."

Chunni Lal said that the violation was "at best unintentional" as this particular drug was of no use in the sport of Fencing.

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