Wrestler Narsingh Yadav’s failed dope test was the result of a conspiracy, the Wrestling Federation of India said on Monday, as the athlete demanded a CBI probe into an episode that has plunged the country’s preparation for next month’s Rio Olympics in crisis.
WFI president Brij Bhusan Saran Singh said the federation believed Yadav was innocent, a day after the athlete failed a dope test for taking banned substances and was provisionally banned for six months.
The 26-year-old grappler tested positive for a banned anabolic steroid and will appear before a National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) panel this week after his samples are tested again.
“The federation feels that injustice has been done with Narsingh Yadav,we hope the committee does justice,” Singh said.
Yadav was a high-profile member of India’s contingent for the Rio Olympics that begins on August 5, having won a protracted battle with double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar, who unsuccessfully challenged his exclusion from the squad in court.
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“I am doing so well, why would I even take banned steroids? A CBI probe should be conducted,” Yadav told news agency ANI.
The federation’s support came hours after Yadav alleged he was the victim of sabotage and that his food and water at an ongoing training camp was contaminated.
“I believe that there is foul play involved in this entire episode,” said Yadav, who won gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. “Someone has sabotaged my food supplements and water intake.
“I am a responsible athlete with an understanding of the country’s expectations and hopes on me. I would never dream of betraying that hope.”
When Narsingh Yadav was caught cheating in a police exam
The federation appeared to support that claim, saying that Yadav and his roommate both tested positive for the same banned substance.
“We have sought a chance from FILA (international body), we want Narsingh to get justice,” said Sharan.