[QODLink]
Athletics

Powell fitness advisor denies aiding athletes

Fitness advisor to Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson speaks of his disappointment at being accused of doping involvement.

Last Modified: 17 Jul 2013 14:39
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Jamaica's Sherone Simpson and Asafa Powell were both given supplement advice by Xuereb [AFP]

Chris Xuereb, the masseur and fitness advisor of Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, has denied providing the two Jamaican sprinters with performance-enhancing drugs and said they should take responsibility for their failed dope tests.

Powell's coach Stephen Francis said on Tuesday that he was unhappy with Canadian Xuereb's involvement with the sprinter while his agent Paul Doyle also said that the positive result was a result of the supplements Xuereb had provided.

Doyle said that former world record holder Powell was taking as many as 19 different supplements since starting work with Xuereb in May.

Xuereb, however, issued a statement by email on Wednesday denying he was to blame and that everybody involved knew what supplements he was providing.

"It is time the athletes took responsibility for their doping instead of looking around for a scapegoat, whether that person is their therapist, bartender or anyone else," Xuereb said.

"I am extremely disappointed that these athletes have chosen to blame me for their own violations. (World Anti-Doping Agency) WADA and the public needs to stop accepting these stories and hold these athletes accountable."

Xuereb said he had provided soft tissue massage therapy and nutritional help for the two athletes as well as helping them recover from chronic injuries since he started working with them two months ago.

Major brands 

"Most importantly, I did not provide any banned or illegal substances to Asafa Powell or Sherone Simpson," he said.

"While I did recommend vitamins, all vitamins recommended by me were all purchased over the counter at reputable nutritional stores and were major brands.

We need to remember that in addition to Asafa and Sherone, three other Jamaican athletes tested positive at the 2013 Jamaican trials. I had no contact with these athletes nor do I know them

Chris Xuereb, Fitness advisor to Powell and Simpson

"I was instructed by the agent and athletes to buy these vitamins. All vitamins recommended by me were shown to the MVP club coach Stephen Francis. 

"He has gone on record and confirmed the vitamins recommended by me did not contain any performance enhancing substance and were not what was found in Asafa and Sherone's positive drug testing findings," he said.

Xuereb also believes the pair were using supplements he had not recommended.

"It is obvious that these athletes were taking additional supplements that were not discussed or known to me. I was informed by the Italian Police that other supplements were found in these athletes' possession," he said.

"I cooperated fully with the Italian Police and provided answers to all their questions. I was not arrested or detained as alleged. I was simply questioned for several hours (as were Asafa and Sherone) and free to leave.

"Unfortunately, it appears that these athletes were not solely following my suggestions or WADA's guidelines. 

"We need to remember that in addition to Asafa and Sherone, three other Jamaican athletes tested positive at the 2013 Jamaican trials. I had no contact with these athletes nor do I know them."

495

Source:
Reuters
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
UNHCR says hundreds of people trapped in Yaloke town risk death if they are not evacuated to safety urgently.
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.

Featured
Long-standing dispute over Christian use of the word 'Allah' raises concerns about a very un-Merry Christmas.
The threat posed by ISIL has prompted thousands of young Kurds to join the PKK.
Baja California - with its own grim history of disappeared people - finds a voice in the fight against violence.
Russian feminist rockers fight system holding 700,000 - the world's largest per capita prison population after the US.
Weeks of growing protests against Muslims continue in Dresden with 15,000 hitting the streets last Monday.