Sunday, 22 July, 2018

Japanese kayaker gets eight-year ban for spiking rival's drink

Canoe- Guangzhou Asian Games- Day 13 Japanese kayaker gets eight-year ban for spiking rival's drink
Sherri Watson | 10 January, 2018, 11:07

A top Japanese canoe sprinter has been banned for eight years, disqualifying him from the Tokyo Olympics, for lacing his rival's drink with a prohibited drug which caused him to fail a doping test.

When confronted about the allegation, Suzuki admitted to spiking Komatsu's drink after he'd "felt guilty".

Yasuhiro Suzuki, 32, drugged his key rival at Japan's national championships in September a year ago. It has recommended Suzuki's expulsion from the federation. "When Komatsu found out he'd tested positive for steroids, he contacted Suzuki [for moral support] right away".

The Japan Canoe Federation has restored Komatsu's records that were stripped after the disqualification and reversed Komatsu's suspension from the sport, ESPN reported. Even within that demographic, 32-year-old kayaker Yasuhiro Suzuki was probably feeling more pressure than most.

According to the federation, Suzuki confessed to investigators that he had slipped the prohibited muscle-building drug into the water of his teammate.

Komatsu himself told the media on Wednesday, "I did not think this could happen in Japan".

Unfortunately it's not the first time we've seen this sort of thing in the sporting world, and it probably won't be the last.

Sources related to the federation said that it is also looking into installing surveillance cameras at locations to keep drinks in major competitions and training sessions for the Japanese national team.

"An incident of this nature is unheard of in the history of sports in Japan and it is very disappointing", Sports Agency Director Daichi Suzuki said.

Ishikawa prefectural police are continuing an investigation launched after Komatsu filed a report concerning the spiking incident and theft of his canoeing equipment.