Sri Lanka news May 30, 2011

SL ministry to investigate Tharanga's failed doping test

ESPNcricinfo staff

The Sri Lankan sports minister, Mahindananda Aluthgamage, has named a three-member panel to look into Upul Tharanga's failed doping test.

"The minister appointed the ministry secretary Udaya Seneviratne, Dr. Geethanjana Mendis and Dr. Maiya Gunasekera to investigate," Harsha Abeykoon, the sports ministry media spokesman, said. "They will be recording a statement from Tharanga," .

Tharanga is also set to face an ICC inquiry, after testing positive during the 2011 World Cup for the banned substance prednisolone - a drug for asthma, a condition from which he is said to suffer.

According to the ICC's anti-doping code, "It is each player's personal duty to ensure that no prohibited substance enters his/her body. A player is responsible for any prohibited substance found to be present in his or her sample. Accordingly, it is not necessary that intent, fault, negligence or knowing use on the player's part be demonstrated in order to establish an anti-doping violation under Article 2.1; nor is the player's lack of intent, fault, negligence or knowledge a defence to a charge that an anti-doping rule violation has been committed under Article 2.1."

However, if a player needs to take a drug that is on the World Anti-Doping Authority's (WADA's) banned list in order to treat an illness, he is required to apply for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE). The Therapeutic Use Exemption Committee (TUEC) evaluates all applications for TUEs received by ICC.

Under the dope-testing process, if a player's A sample is found to contain a banned substance, he will have the option of asking for his B sample to be tested as well. If his B sample is also found to be positive, then the player could face a provisional suspension until the ICC carries out its inquiry; if the B sample is negative, the investigation is discontinued. It is uncertain how far into the process the ICC is with regard to the Sri Lanka cricketer.