Australian Olympian Peter Ball responded sharply to the drug scandal in an explosive sit-in interview.
Bol’s name was thrown into the dirt when the bomb went off. A positive result was registered on 10 January. this year.
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The 28-year-old man begged everyone along with him to believe in his innocence. The B sample, which returned in mid-February, “did not confirm the A sample.”
Bol maintained his innocence in a statement released shortly after his B sample was made public, but did not provide a timeline for a return to competition.
“I will say again: I am innocent and did not take this substance, as I was accused,” he said.
“I have NEVER in my life bought, researched, owned, injected or used synthetic EPO or any other banned substance, and never will.”
As he continued to clear his name and search for answers, Bol went on the offensive and believes that the leak of his positive sample came from either Athletics Australia or Sport Integrity Australia.
Constantly preaching his innocence, the Sudanese-born athlete says that in time it will be known how the result came about and where the leak came from.
When asked to explain how a test would come back positive for a banned substance, EPO, Bol said it could be nothing more than a mistake.
“It must be a mistake, because I am 100% sure of my innocence. I’m not sure if this is a test or what’s going on, but I’ve never used it, not in my innocence, and the truth will come out sooner or later,” he said.
A few weeks after the positive test became known, Bol said that no one from Athletics Australia’s senior management had approached him for support.
Although he said that some people from the organization contacted him, they were not the people they thought would be in his corner.
In a blunt response, Bol said that even if the phone rang now, he “wouldn’t even pick up the phone.”
“I was disappointed in a few people who didn’t (convert). There are some people who have done this, but we wanted responsible people to give this support too. Maybe they are calling another number,” he said.
“I wouldn’t even pick up the phone right now,” he added.
Not wanting to directly point the finger at where his positive A sample came from, Bol said he knew for sure that it did not come from his own camp. Leaving only Athletics Australia or Sports Integrity Australia in the spotlight.
The news came just days before Bol was in contention for the Young Australian of the Year award. What he says is not accidental.
In a statement provided to Seven News, Athletics Australia danced around the matter if they were responsible for releasing the A pattern.
“Athletics Australia has maintained the confidentiality of the A sample results and the suspension as directed by Sport Integrity Australia,” the statement said.
“At the same time, we were aware that the suspension would result in Peter being absent from training and having his name removed from the starting lists at several high-profile competitions.
“Athletics Australia in no way intended to mislead our community about Sample A or make up a story to explain Peter’s absence from training or competition.”
Bol’s team has received a lab bag containing a positive test, which they will send to an independent lab to clear his name.
Bol’s lawyer Paul Green launched an explosive attack after the B tryout, targeting Sports Integrity Australia (SIA) for how they handled it all.
He said that the announced Sample A was “a disgrace” and called the process “incredible”.
“That support, I think, helped him get through the last month,” Greene said.
“The problem is that it should never have been announced,” he said.
“You should never announce this until the athlete has been charged.
“We were never shown any lab documents at all, there was no supporting documentation, we never had the opportunity to have an expert look at Sample A, it’s just a very bad process.
“USADA is the world leader in this regard – they will never announce a test before a B sample confirms an A, and it will not happen before a letter of indictment is issued.
“Not in the United States, under any circumstances.
“No one would ever know about this if Pete was an American athlete.”
Originally published as Peter Ball speaks out after drug scandal rocked Australian athletics