Oldham Roughyeds player takes six-month drug ban ‘on the chin’ after accidental breach of WADA regulations

By Matt Simpson

Oldham Roughyeds David Cookson will serve a six-month suspension after inadvertently breaching the Rugby Football League’s anti-doping regulations.

The 24-year-old centre provided a sample containing the stimulant Methylhexaneamine, a substance on WADA’s prohibited list, making it susceptible to inadvertent use.

Cookson is adamant the supplement – found in an energy drink – was not intended to enhance performance, but says he will take the punishment on the chin and move forward.

“I broke the rule and I take the punishment on the chin,” he told the club’s website.

“UK Anti-Doping and the RFL both accepted that I was not trying to enhance my performance and that this was an inadvertent error on my part.”

“It will soon be behind me, and I will then be able to focus on the challenges of the new Championship One season that lies ahead.”

The ban, back-dated from the end of last August, will run until February 28 and the Englishman has thanked the club and his barrister for their continued support.

“I would like to publicly thank the Oldham club, its chairman Chris Hamilton and my barrister Daniel Saoul for their support throughout this process,” he added.

Oldham Chairman, Chris Hamilton, said the club recognised this breach of regulations was unintentional and urged players to be wary when taking supplements.

“Club policy dictates that we do not condone any breach of doping regulations,” he told the club’s website.

“In this case, however, we supported the player because we recognised that it was not an intentional breach and it was not performance enhancing.

“All players need to be careful about the use of supplements and we will be making sure all of our players are aware of the risks.”

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