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Salwa Eid Naser escapes doping ban on a technicality and is cleared to run at next year's Olympics


Salwa Eid Naser escapes doping ban on a technicality and is cleared to run at next year’s Olympics after one of her missed tests fell outside 12-month window… while a tester door-stepped a STORAGE UNIT instead of her home

  • Salwa Eid Naser has been cleared to run at the Olympics after missed drug tests  
  • The 400m champion was provisionally suspended for ‘whereabouts’ violation 
  • She was charged for missing three tests between March 2019 and January 2020
  • Naser also recorded filing failure, but it fell outside crucial 12-month time frame
  • She also escaped a ban because the tester arrived at the wrong apartment  

World 400m champion Salwa Eid Naser has escaped a doping ban on a technicality – and because a tester unwittingly door-stepped a storage unit containing gas canisters instead of her home.

The Nigerian, who ran the quickest time since 1985 in winning world gold for Bahrain last year, was provisionally suspended in June for falling foul of ‘whereabouts’ rules, which penalise three missed tests or filing failures in the space of 12 months.

Naser was charged by the Athletics Integrity Unit earlier this year on the basis of three missed tests and one filing failure between March 12, 2019 and January 24, 2020, but it was confirmed on Tuesday that an independent tribunal has now cleared her to run at next year’s Olympics.

Salwa Eid Naser has been cleared to run at the Olympics after escaping a drugs ban for missed tests on a technicality

Salwa Eid Naser has been cleared to run at the Olympics after escaping a drugs ban for missed tests on a technicality

The 22-year-old’s reprieve centred on two details. The first related to a filing failure on March 16, 2019, which under the rules was backdated to the start of the filing quarter, meaning it was listed as January 1, 2019. Christian Coleman escaped a ban on the same technicality last year.

The second, more peculiar detail concerned a missed test on April 12, 2019, when it transpired the tester had been confused by the numbering on the building of her apartment in Riffa, Bahrain. 

The independent tribunal described circumstances that ‘would have been comical were the consequences not so serious’, and pointed to the tester knocking for an hour from 6am on a storage unit containing gas canisters. Naser’s apartment was in the block next door.

Naser's filing failure fell outside a 12-month window, while a tester door-stepped the wrong apartment - instead knocking on the door of a storage unit

Naser’s filing failure fell outside a 12-month window, while a tester door-stepped the wrong apartment – instead knocking on the door of a storage unit 

With the April strike dismissed, Naser’s three remaining breaches were listed as January 1, 2019, March 12, 2019 and January 24, 2020, meaning she was cleared of three in a one-year period. 

Sportsmail has contacted Naser’s management for comment. 

Earlier this year she said: ‘I’ve never been a cheat. I would never take performance-enhancing drugs.’



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