It was confirmed in August 2018 that Sam Murray was being investigated by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority, and he was provisionally suspended after returning a positive test in that season. The Collingwood player has since received an 18-month ban by a tribunal for the AFL. But he will be free to join the 2020 competition when this lifts in February next year. The code states that parties may start an appeal within 21 days of the written reason being delivered, with the World Anti-Doping Agency having some subsequent appeal rights also.
The AFL Players’ Association released a statement saying that the sanction of fewer than 2 years from the tribunal is an acknowledgement that the player’s anti-doping code breach was unintentional. It is being admitted that there has not been any significant fault or negligence committed by Murray.
He released a statement accompanying this one thanking the Players’ Association and mentioning specifically the support of his family, friends, and the Collingwood Football Club. He revealed that he has time to reflect on his values over the last year and that he is now more committed to an AFL career than ever before. He pledged to focus on doing everything in his power to keep that dream alive. Murray ended off by saying that he would be waiting for the Tribunal to deliver the full reason behind its decision and that he would be in a position to make more comments on the proceedings at that time.
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