Blessing Okagbare: Nigerian sprinter fails drugs test, suspended from Tokyo Olympics

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 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare has been suspended after failing a drugs test, just hours before the women’s 100m Olympic final.

Okagbare had cruised to first place in her 100m preliminary race, and had been due to face off against Team GB’s Dina Asher-Smith in today’s semi-finals.

But the Nigerian tested positive for human growth hormone (HGH) in a sample taken during an out-of-competition test on July 19, and is now suspended from the Tokyo Games.

A statement from the Athletics Integrity Unit said: “The AIU has provisionally suspended Blessing Okagbare of Nigeria, with immediate effect after an out-of-competion sample collect from the sprinter tested positive for human Growth Hormone, a prohibited substance on the 2021 WADA Prohibited List.“

The WADA-accredited laboratory that analysed the sample notified the AIU of the adverse analytical finding at mid-day CET on Friday.

“The athlete was notified of the adverse analytical finding and of her provisional suspension this morning in Tokyo. She was scheduled to participate in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m this evening.“

“The AIU will make no further comment on this matter at this time.”

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