SA Rugby denies allegations 'circulating in media' of Springboks' recreational drug use

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  • SA Rugby has denied allegations of positive drug tests and substance abuse among their players.
  • The statement comes in a week where the Boks dealt with the blow of flyhalf Elton Jantjies and team dietician Zeenat Simjee returning to South Africa to deal with 'personal reports'.
  • The Springboks play Argentina in a Rugby Championship fixture in Buenos Aires on Saturday.

SA Rugby has strongly denied allegations of substance abuse within the Springbok camp or that any of the players had produced positive drugs test results.

The organisation said it was aware that "unsubstantiated allegations of failed tests for recreational drugs by Springbok players are circulating among members of the media."

Online platform Sarugbymag claimed on Saturday that SA Rugby had sought to quash a story from a South African publication that was set to publish an explosive report on recreational drug use and positive tests in the Bok camp.

In a strongly worded statement, SA Rugby said the allegations have already had surfaced on an online platform 'despite the absence of any evidence to support them'.

"SA Rugby has consistently advised all inquiring media that no such reports have been received by SA Rugby or any player from the only authority permitted to perform such tests, the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport. SA Rugby does not conduct its own tests," the statement said.

"Despite the absence of any such reports, players and management in Argentina have been contacted to 'tell their story', distracting and destabilising the entire camp in the build-up today's Test against Argentina in Buenos Aires.

"SA Rugby wishes to repeat that it has no evidence of any adverse analytical findings for any kind of drug - be it performance enhancing or recreational - by Springbok players and regards the publication or the threat to publish such allegations as a deliberate attempt to sabotage the team's preparations."

Kick-off on Saturday is at 21:10 SA time.

The statement in full:

SA Rugby is aware that unsubstantiated allegations of failed tests for recreational drugs by Springbok players are circulating among members of the media.

Disappointingly, these allegations have already appeared online despite the absence of any evidence to support them.

SA Rugby has consistently advised all inquiring media that no such reports have been received by SA Rugby or any player from the only authority permitted to perform such tests, the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport. SA Rugby does not conduct its own tests.

Despite the absence of any such reports, players and management in Argentina have been contacted to "tell their story", distracting and destabilising the entire camp in the build-up of today's Test against Argentina in Buenos Aires.

SA Rugby wishes to repeat that it has no evidence of any adverse analytical findings for any kind of drug - be it performance enhancing or recreational - by Springbok players and regards the publication or the threat to publish such allegations as a deliberate attempt to sabotage the team’s preparations.

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