Powell vows to keep running
25 July 2013, 16:14
Kingston - Sprinters Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, still awaiting their fates in the doping scandal that has rocked Jamaican athletics, have vowed to return to the sport.
"I have never thought about it (retiring)," Powell said in comments published in the Jamaica Gleaner, adding that he was "shocked" when he learned he had tested positive for the banned stiumulant oxilofrine at Jamaica's world championship trials in June.
Powell and Simpson, who tested positive for the same stimulant, were both awaiting the results of their B samples and the impending hearing that will determine their fates.
Both face a possible three-month ban and both are expected to miss next month's IAAF World Championships in Moscow.
Powell, 30, and the former world record-holder in the men's 100m, has even hinted he could stay around until the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
"I am still training. I consider this an off year, but I am still working hard, training, going to the gym almost every day," said Powell, who finished a disappointing seventh in the 100m at the trials but hoped for a relay berth in Moscow.
"It's very unfortunate that I will not be going to the World Championships, but there is a lot more to go. There is a World Championships, in two years' time again and then the Olympics. So there is a lot to look forward to."
Simpson, who finished second in both the women's 100m and 200m at the trials to book her World Championship berths, also said she expected to continue in the sport.
"For me, no retirement, it was not in my thoughts," said Simpson, who shared the 100m silver at the 2008 Olympics with compatriot Kerron Stewart in a sensational tie behind Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.
"I do think that I am still pretty young. I have a few years to go, and I will continue."
She said she was shocked when she received the call while in Madrid, where she was to have competed in the 100m and had to ask Doctor Herb Elliott, chairman of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission, if he was sure that he had the right name.
"To be honest, I cannot remember what happened after that," Simpson said.
Both athletes, through their agent Paul Doyle, have mentioned supplements they were given by Canadian trainer Chris Xeureb as a possible cause for the positive tests.
"I would like to make it clear that we are not blaming anyone," Simpson said. "We were asked if we were taking any new supplements, and we told the authorities where we got it from."