Demetriou expects drugs spike

Written By Unknown on Rabu, 23 Januari 2013 | 14.43

AFL supremo Andrew Demetriou. Picture: Julie Kiriacoudis Source: Herald Sun

AFL boss Andrew Demetriou has prepared the football world for a spike in positive drug tests by players when 2012 figures are revealed.

The 2011 figure, released in June last year, revealed six players tested positive to illicit drugs in out-of-competition tests.

As club CEOs prepare for a drugs summit next Wednesday, Demetriou said he expected that number to rise.

"I think we're going to see a spike this year, but I haven't got that data yet," the league chief executive said on Channel 7.

"Our ideal result is getting zero positives, but we know we're not going to get there, that would be a foolish expectation."

Collingwood CEO Gary Pert called for tougher action by AFL clubs on the issue of illicit drugs in November, saying there was a serious issue of "volcanic behaviour" by players during the off-season.

In December the Herald Sun revealed that some players were exploiting a loophole in the league's three-strikes drug policy by self-reporting the use of illicit drugs.

By self-reporting, players avoid registering a positive drug test and a strike against their name.

Self-reporting is a feature of the AFL's three-strikes illicit drugs policy and occurs when a player wishes to admit having used drugs.

Demetriou said he was open to discussions about the three strikes policy, but he maintained that players could not dodge drug tests.

"If there is a player or an official that is in involved in the use of illicit drugs or performance-enhancing drugs, inevitably they will be caught, and they will pay a hell of a price," he said.

"There's no coming back and you will get caught, that's what I do know."

The six positive tests in 2011 were first-time offenders and for stimulants, which include cocaine, ecstasy and amphetamines. There were no positive second or third tests.

Under the AFL's illicit drugs policy, players are only named publicly if they test positive three times.

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