BEHIND THE DESK: Should we be surprised doping happens?
IT'S 2020, WILL THEY EVER REALLY LEARN?
WHEN has doping ever paid off?
Well, it's hard to tell really as I'm sure plenty of people in the past have got away with it, but in this day and age, no chance.
Cronulla Sharks (it just had to be them) young gun Bronson Xerri is the latest NRL star to have been caught out after testing positive for substances prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Agency and the NRL's anti-doping policy this week.
The test was taken last November and Xerri will now need to produce a B-sample, but what a shame it was to see this surface on the eve of the NRL's big return.
Way to kill the vibe.
You would think the scandal of 2013 would have been enough to teach the Sharks to keep a closer eye on their players and what they are putting into their body.
Maybe they are, maybe Xerri is just a rogue case and for the club's sake, I hope he is, but I just don't understand how these players think they can get away with it.
Particularly in the current climate when players are being tested up to two times a week for Covid-19.
Perhaps Xerri was led astray. Another player could have given a new supplement but it's hard to imagine these blokes not checking the label.
As an Essendon Bombers fan, I never wish to see another club go through the same misery as me.
Doping simply has to stop.
DOPING WILL BE A CONSTANT PROBLEM
AS A sports fan, doping is something that no-one ever wants to see. Taking a look back at some of the more infamous cases, such as Lance Armstrong, Sun Yang and the state sanctioned campaign undertaken by the Russians (and the USSR and East Germany before them), it has the effect of eroding the public's confidence in not just the administrators but the sport as a whole.
When it was described that Bronson Xerri's positive A sample was "Ben Johnson" bad, well that's really a doozy.
It must be said that some Australian codes and teams don't have a good track record of late when it comes to banned substances, and it's very unfortunate that Xerri happens to play for the Cronulla Sharks who were exposed for running an illegal supplements scheme in 2011.
Given the stakes are incredibly high in professional sport, competition for positions is fierce and the pressure is high to perform I think there will always be players tempted by those offering an edge of the illicit variety.
Anti-doping authorities are always one step behind the dopers, and there will always be players willing to risk their careers for a shortcut or advantage.
While I don't agree that doping is on the rise, it will always be a constant problem.
Sport around the world will always have a doping problem, I think it's just human nature and the nature of the beast but as sports fans we hate to see it