NAIROBI, July 23 (Xinhua) — Commonwealth Games 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi on Thursday joined a long list of Kenyan stars to be suspended over anti-doping violations.
The Athletics Integrity Unit announced the suspension of Manangoi, also the 2017 World 1,500m champion, for failing to file his whereabouts or locations to be available for out-of-competition testing as required by the anti-doping watchdog.
Missing three tests in a 12-month span can lead to a suspension, even if an athlete has never tested positive.
Others who have faced the wrath of the anti-doping authority include Mercy Kibarus, Kenneth Kiprop Kipkemoi and Patrick Siele.
Kibarus, 36, received an eight-year ban for testing positive for the banned substance Norandrosterone. The ban started on December 5, 2019.
Kipkemoi was banned for two years for testing positive for Terbutaline, with his ban backdated to February 25, while Siele got provisional suspensions for evading, refusing or failing to submit sample collection.
Manangoi’s suspension comes on the heels of Wilson Kipsang, a former marathon world-record holder who was slapped with a four-year ban over the same violation.
The reigning Commonwealth Games champion said the news of his suspension was devastating to him, noting that the missed tests happened last year and had nothing to do with prohibited substances.
“News of my suspension by the AIU for three missed tests is really devastating for me and I’m trying to get my head around it. What I can say is each of the missed tests happened during 2019, my case has nothing to do with prohibited substances and I’ve always competed as a clean athlete,” Manangoi said in a statement.
He said 2019 was the worst period of his career when he was upset through injury which affected everything on and off the track.
“I know I have let people down, in particular, my coach and fellow athletes and I also know that no matter what I say here I will be criticized. The facts of the cases are clear in my mind and I am sure there will be a time when it is appropriate to go into more detail. But right now I’m focused on compiling a formal response to the AIU so won’t be commenting further,” he added. Enditem