Sailor opts against appeal

Wendell Sailor is set to serve his two-year ban for testing positive for cocaine after deciding not to lodge an appeal with the Australian Rugby Union. [more]

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Wendell Sailor is set to serve his two-year ban for testing positive for cocaine after deciding not to lodge an appeal with the Australian Rugby Union.

The former rugby league international, who was a regular member of the Wallaby team after switching codes in 2001, tested positive for the banned drug in April after playing for the Waratahs in the Super 14 against the ACT Brumbies.

But having been suspended from all rugby competitions for two years in July by an Australian Rugby Union judiciary committee, Sailor was given three weeks in which to appeal that decision with the governing body.

The ARU has now revealed that Sailor’s lawyer has informed the body that he will not be appealing against either the guilty verdict or the length of his penalty, leaving him now with only the option of an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

Having closed the door on attempting to have the decision overturned with the ARU, Sailor has until Friday, August 25 to lodge an appeal with CAS.

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At his ARU hearing Sailor had argued that because he had taken the cocaine four days before the Brumbies match it should not be considered performance-enhancing, but the judiciary ruled the claim was ‘without foundation and must fail’.

The 32-year-old has not given up hope of resuming his sporting career when he has served the ban though, having indicated that he believes he will be capable of playing at least two more years of top-level sport because his body will be refreshed.

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