KUALA LUMPUR – World number one badminton player, Datuk Lee Chong Wei was confirmed as testing positive for the banned substance, ‘dexamethasone’ in the ‘Sample B’ test conducted at the Oslo University Hospital in Norway on Wednesday.
Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) deputy president Datuk Norza Zakaria told a media conference today, he received the official result from the Badminton World Federation (BWF) yesterday.
However, the name of the player could not be revealed before the BWF investigation was completed, he said.
Local media, prior to this, reported that Chong Wei was linked to a doping scandal after ‘dexamethasone’ was found in his urine during a random test at the World Championship in Copenhagen, Denmark in August.
‘Dexamethasone’ is a steroid medicine with anti-inflammation effect for treating various health problems, including rheumatology.
Norza said the case would be referred to the BWF doping hearing panel and the decision on punishment would be known in two weeks.
BAM would cooperate with Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin to tackle the issue, and a lawyer skilled in sport law, Mike Morgan of England had been appointed to help in the issue, he added.
“The date of the hearing has not been set yet but I believe it will take about two weeks to settle,” said Norza.
However, the national badminton icon was temporarily suspended after testing positive for banned anti-inflammatory dexamethasone, he said, adding that the dexamethasone was not a performance enhancing but a rehabilitative drug.
Norza said the matter would be referred to the BWF Doping Hearing Panel to provide the time, date and location of the hearing.
“BAM believe the player is a very hard-working and exceptional individual, who has never resorted to ‘short-cuts’ in his pursuit to achieve success.
“From our side, we have some justification that the player is innocent. The main priority is to assist the player because he is part of the BAM family. He has done a lot for the country,” he said.
The sports icon reportedly failed the drug test at the World Badminton Championships in Copenhagen in August.
Meanwhile, BAM general manager Kenny Goh described the player as stressed and that he needed all the support he could get at the moment. – Bernama