Calls To Re-Test Blessing Okagbare Grow Following Olympic Suspension
Sports fans are calling for Olympic athlete Blessing Okagbare to be given another drugs test after she tested positive for human growth hormone.
Okagbare received a mandatory provisional suspension following the result, which was announced today, July 31, by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) after an out-of-competition test on July 19.
In a post on Twitter, the AIU wrote, ‘The AIU has provisionally suspended Blessing Okagbare of Nigeria, with immediate effect after an out-of-competition sample collected from the sprinter tested positive for human Growth Hormone, a prohibited substance on the 2021 WADA Prohibited List.’
The suspension came just hours before the Nigerian sprinter was due to compete against Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith in their 100m semi-final at the Tokyo Olympics, and in the wake of the news many social media users are now calling for her to be re-tested.
One person said the test result ‘isn’t sitting well’ with them, writing, ‘They should just run the test again’, while another commented, ‘Test Blessing Okagbare again. Bring our own doctors to test her too.’
Another tweet read, ‘Blessing Okagbare evicted from the big brother Tokyo. At this point we need to rerun the test with another doctor….why must it be in the semi finals.’
While a fourth person commented, ‘Can the Olympics committee run another test for Okagbare. Just to be super sure ? Like super super sure. Nigerians need a win that huge right now. A news that great.’
Okagbare finished first in her heat for the women’s sprint event on Friday, July 30, with a time of 11.05 seconds. The result beat Britain’s Asha Philip and Tynia Gaither of the Bahamas, and secured her place in a third consecutive Olympic semi-final.
The AIU has said Okagbare’s drug test sample was analysed by a WADA-accredited laboratory, with the athlete notified about her suspension in Tokyo this morning.
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