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7s coach Treu lambastes report linking him to doping

23 October 2014, 10:51

Nairobi - Kenya rugby sevens head coach on Wednesday labeled the government-sponsored Anti-Doping Agency report that accused him and his technical bench of introducing supplements that were found to contain steroids after testing as lacking in transparency.

In a statement sent from South Africa on his behalf by Glenda Neville, Treu denied introducing food supplements, claiming he was responsible for introducing a "no-supplement policy" when he arrived in Kenya to take over the sevens team in November last year.

"When I arrived, players were taking supplements. We decided, as we would have done in South Africa, to not endorse or advocate taking supplements of any kind, preferring to focus on proper nutrition," his statement said.

The Task Force, led by Professor Moni Wekesa, completed its initial report in April, but it was formally released by Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Arts and Culture, Dr. Hassan Wario last Friday.

Treu questioned the credentials of the investigators who are not recognized by the International Rugby Board (IRB) as an anti- doping agency.

Also read: KRU Chairman: Rugby players are clean

"We know the risk of supplements as we know how easily they can cause athletes to fail tests. During my time with South African rugby, we had a strict supplement policy, developed in conjunction with scientists and dietitians, specifically for this reason," the tactician who was in charge of South Africa's sevens team, Blitzbokke for nine years insisted.

"That's why from the very beginning, when we came into the Kenyan Sevens set up, we tried to get rid of supplements. It was one of the first actions we took on arrival in Kenya. We wanted to substitute supplements with food and rather use only a certified product that was guaranteed not to be contaminated (Futurelife). The use of supplements is definitely not part of our game plan," he added.

"The supplement industry is not well enough controlled to have absolute faith in it. And besides, there's little evidence that they really work, provided diet is optimized. The only responsible approach is remove all supplements, and then specifically seek out certified supplements and food products, which is exactly what we did at the outset," Ross Tucker who has consulted and advised Treu on scientific and strategic matters since 2007 added in the declaration.

"My strategic focus in training is to apply the South African approach where we condition players using the science of nutrition, " Treu advised.

"We need to bring in experts in this complex field to show them how it's done, properly. We need to know what substances are banned, and which are legal. How they are contaminated. How to condition players using the science of nutrition."

The supplement at the heart of the controversy that trades by the name "Evox" was brought in by the Kenyan Rugby Union a year ago, before Treu started as the Sevens coach the statement claimed.

They handed over the supplement to the government investigators at the end of 2013. The players themselves weren't tested.

"I believe in transparency so urge the task team to release the full report and the laboratory tests done on the supplement. It is incumbent on them to make public the names of the drugs, the amounts they found in the product, their benefits, if any, and their side effects so the sports industry is made fully aware of all the issues involved," the coach maintained.

 - Xinhua

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