Prithvi Shaw suspended for a doping violation

File picture of Prithvi Shaw. (AFP)

India Test cricketer Prithvi Shaw has been handed a backdated eight-month suspension for consumption of specified substance terbutaline, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced on Tuesday evening.

Shaw was reprimanded along with two others -- Vidharbha’s Akshay Dullarwar and Rajasthan’s Divya Gajraj. Dullarwar tested positive for Desacetyl Deflazacort and has been handed an eight-month suspension. Gajraj had tested positive for Acetazolamide, a diuretic and masking agent, and had been given a six-month suspension. The BCCI was “satisfied” with their explanations and in its statement mentioned the prohibited substance were “inadvertently” ingested by the trio.

The urine sample of 19-year-old Shaw was collected during the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy on February 22, 2019 at Indore. He was charged with the commission of an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) under the BCCI Anti-Doping Rules (ADR) Article 2.1 on July 16, 2019, and provisionally suspended pending determination of the charge. His suspension period would end on November 15.

Interesting, Shaw was allowed to compete in the Indian Premier League during March-May despite the sample collection in February. However, there was no mention in the release of the date when the lab results came nor there was there any clarity about the disqualification of his certain results and whether it would impact the team he played for.

Shaw has contended the drug entered his body through the consumption of an over-the-counter syrup he had taken for cough. BCCI was convinced Shaw didn’t use Terbutaline for performance enhancement.

The Board said it considered all of the evidence and took "expert external advice" before accepting Shaw's explanation and agreed that a "period of ineligibility of eight months should apply, together with disqualification of certain results".

“The BCCI is satisfied with Mr. Shaw’s explanation that he had taken terbutaline inadvertently to treat a respiratory tract infection and not as a performance-enhancing drug,” the statement read.

“Under BCCI ADR Article 10.10.3, Mr. Shaw is entitled to full credit against that period of ineligibility for the provisional suspension that he has been serving since 16th July 2019.

“In addition, because Mr. Shaw promptly admitted his ADRV upon being confronted with it by the BCCI, there is discretion under BCCI ADR Article 10.10.2 to back-date the start of the period of Ineligibility to the date of sample collection (22nd February 2019). However, the BCCI ADR Article 10.10.2 also requires Mr. Shaw to actually serve one half of the period of ineligibility. Therefore, further to BCCI ADR Article 10.10.2, the eight-month period of Ineligibility will be deemed to have started to run on 16th March 2019, so that it will end at midnight on 15th November 2019.”

"Under BCCI ADR Article 10.11.2 a cricketer may return to train with a team or continue to use the facilities of a club or other member organisation of a signatory’s member organisation during the shorter of: (i) the last two months of the Cricketer’s period of Ineligibility; or (ii) the last one-quarter of the period of Ineligibility imposed.

“Therefore, Mr. Shaw may return to train with his State team and/or to use the facilities of any club or other member organisation of the BCCI after midnight on 15th September 2019,” BCCI said.

Last year former India all-rounder Yusuf Pathan was handed a backdated suspension of five months also for the consumption of terbutaline. It was also termed as “inadvertent” ingestion by the BCCI. Pathan had argued the substance entered his body through a medicine given to him by mistake for Upper Respiratory Tract Infection (URTI).

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