AFL players secretly banned after positive drug tests

Yahoo!7 February 6, 2013, 10:09 am

The AFL has confirmed that players have repeatedly been banned from playing for breaches of the league's controversial illicit drugs policy.

The code's three-strike policy means positive tests are not made public until a third positive reading. Only club doctors are made aware of any positive tests.

But AFL chief Andrew Demetriou said while test results remain secret, club doctors have prevented some players from playing.

"Club doctors would tell the coach or the football manager that a certain player was not in a condition to play," Demetriou told The Australian.

"He does not need to specify any injury or illness, just that he considers the player not well enough to play.

"It is not uncommon if a club doctor who is treating a player, for depression say, to tell the coach that the player is not available for selection because of illness."

Demetriou said player confidentially had not been compromised.

AFL medical officer Peter Harcourt told last week's AFL summit on drugs that some players were deemed "not fit to play" while they were undergoing rehabilitation and had been stood down from matches.

"You don't have to be on two strikes to be forced to stop playing," Demetriou said.

"If a player tests positive just once and the AFL medical officers believe he needs prolonged rehabilitation then he will not be allowed to play."

The Australian is reporting at least four players tested positive twice to banned drugs last season.

Newest First
Oldest First
Top Rated
Most Replies


  1. Steve06:04pm Wednesday 06th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    After three strikes , you must be a confirmed drug addict.On the top of every player contract should be printed; IF YOU PLAY WITH DRUGS.YOU CAN'T PLAY OUR GAME.

  2. Col04:46pm Wednesday 06th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Where do you stand on your "3 strikes and you're out" policy now Demetriou?

  3. Geoff5112:40pm Wednesday 06th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    double standards by demetriou in using doctors to lie to the coach and stop players playing while keeping the coach and club in the dark about a players drug use. young tuck from hawthorn could have died because of holding back relevant imformation from the club about his other drug strikes, as he was found unconscience in his car, his club and parents otherwise would have been able to monator him more closely, if he had died, the afl's policy would have been just as much to blame as tuck himself for continueing taking drugs and afl policy just as much to blame for his 3 strikes without help from club and parents

  4. Glib11:41am Wednesday 06th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    AFL corruption everywhere

    3 Replies
  5. Orthorob10:36am Wednesday 06th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    I think it is wrong that elite sports clubs ie AFL can hide players illegal activities ie drug use when the general public are hauled before the courts. These guys are supposed to be leaders and role models but flaunt the law because of their sporting ability. Three strikes is a joke. Joe bloggs usually doesn't get that from the courts.