British Olympic silver medalist CJ Ujah has maintained his innocence as he faces a lengthy ban after two banned substances were found in his system following events in Tokyo, with the sprinter set to blame a ‘labelling error’.
Ujah, who took silver as part of Great Britain’s 4x100m relay team last month, is understood by the UK media to be poised to blame the labeling for his positive result after the two separate substances, ostarine and S-23, were discovered in a drug test during the Olympic Games.
The 27-year-old sprinter has been provisionally suspended pending the review of a second sample which, if it is also found to contain performance enhancing drugs, will almost certainly lead to a long suspension, as well as Team GB losing their silver medal status for the race.
Reports also indicate that Ujah will claim that he ingested any banned substances mistakenly and that they weren’t listed as ingredients on health supplements he had consumed during the Games.
However, it appears unlikely that the Court of Arbitration for Sport will look too kindly on any such excuse, prompting speculation that a ban of four years could be imposed on the sprinter.
Olympic rules also dictate that if one member of a team tests positive for performance enhancers, each member of that team will lose any medals they have won.
Ujah’s teammates, Zharnel Hughes, Richard Kilty and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake, haven’t yet commented on the matter but The Mirror has quoted Kilty’s brother, Kevin, as saying that it is unfortunate for him to potentially miss out on a medal due to a teammate’s actions.
“He has done nothing wrong,” he said. “He worked so hard for this, ever since he was a little lad.”
Ujah, for his part, has strenuously denied that he knowingly cheated.
“To be absolutely clear, I am not a cheat and I have never and would never knowingly take a banned substance,” he said.
“I love my sport and I know my responsibilities both as an athlete and as a teammate.”