'I've Never Taken A Banned Substance': Brooksby Vows To Appeal Doping Suspension

'I've Never Taken A Banned Substance': Brooksby Vows To Appeal Doping Suspension

by Nurein Ahmed

For athletes, the most harrowing news is being questioned and sanctioned for flouting the rules that safeguard the integrity of the sport they compete in.

That was the fate of Jenson Brooksby, who on Tuesday, was judged to be culpable in violating the anti-doping rules as a consequence of missing three out-of-competition drug tests. Brooksby had accepted the first and third tests were his "fault", but contested the second test.

Brooksby gave a full account of his whereabouts on June 4, 2022 - the day of the aforementioned disputed test - in a hearing and later on in an Instagram post. The 22-year-old shed light on what exactly happened. Brooksby believes the whole situation was mishandled, faulting the Doping Control Officer and the hotel he was staying at.

Brooksby pleaded his innocence admitting the hotel was booked under the name of his physio in the first few days of his stay (presumably in the tournament in 's-Hertogenbosch), because the ATP had not provided him with a room until June 4.

Brooksby informed the hotel staff to add his name as an occupant in the room for identification purposes. By his account, the American explained that the hotel desk informed the Doping Officer that he hadn't checked in. He adds, how all this could have been solved by simply calling his room, as his personal phone was in silent mode and he was unaware the Doping Officer was there to test him.

"I was in my hotel room for the entirety of my 1-hour testing window. The hotel room had been booked for the first part of my stay in the name of my physio (who was staying with me), because ATP did not provide me with a room until June 4."

"Starting on June 4, the room was in my name, but I had asked that my name be added to the room days before that. The hotel told the officer that I had not yet checked in, but they did show him their computer screen which already had my room number listed on it."

"Having that information, the Doping Control Officer never asked the hotel to call my room, so I did not know that they were there to test. The officer only called my cellphone (which was on silent) in the last 4 minutes of the testing window (at 6:56 am). Had the officer called my hotel room even once, I would have been tested, because I was awake and had nothing to hide."

Brooksby intends to appeal the independent tribunal's ruling in the Court of Arbitration for Sport and reiterates his innocence. The former World No. 33 opined that he had taken any prohibited substances in his life and was very disappointed to learn that he was suspended just as when he was embarking to rejoin the tour from a serious wrist injury.

"I am very disappointed to learn that I have been suspended for 18 months, for 3 missed tests. I have never taken a banned substance in my life. I was open and honest with ITIA throughout my case. I understand that it is my responsibility and will learn and grow."


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