2 Thai athletes kicked out after failing drugs tests

2007-12-11 19:35:46 Xinhua English

BEIJING, Dec. 12 -- Two Thai athletes have been kicked out of this week's Southeast Asian (SEA) Games after failing out-of-competition drugs tests, a senior official said yesterday.

Gymnast Panaporn Kosol and field hockey player Surathep Wisawathiron tested positive for steroids in the run-up to the Games in Nakhon Ratchasima and have been handed two-year bans, Chattraporn Nanakorn, head of the SEA Games Doping Control Committee, said.

"They failed the tests before the Games and are therefore not allowed to compete," Chattraporn said.

"The Sports Authority of Thailand had decided to ban them for two years from the date of the tests."

The positive tests went unannounced at the Games and did not appear on official Games Websites or in the local media, which is dominated by stories of Thailand's runaway success.

The hosts top the medals table on 78 golds, with second-placed Vietnam on 41 and Singapore on 32.

Some 5,000 athletes from Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, East Timor, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Brunei, Myanmar and the Philippines, are competing in 43 sports, with 475 gold medals up for grabs.

The Games will finish on Saturday.

(Source: Shanghai Daily)