FIFA defend World Cup doping procedure


FIFA have defended their doping procedure at the World Cup finals after accusations that independent observers have been denied access to testing.

The President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), Dick Pound, said the body was disappointed not to be allowed to monitor testing at the finals.

FIFA is carrying out the procedures itself at the 64 matches, unlike the Olympics, where WADA act as observers.

"We were a little disappointed not to be independent observers for the World Cup," said Pound yesterday.

"We think it would have added a certain credibility to the process."

But Professor Jiri Dvorak, FIFA's chief medical officer for the 2002 World Cup, said he was completely satisfied with the measures put in place and said independent observers would make no difference to the procedure.

Explaining the procedure being used at the finals, Dvorak said the names of two players per team were drawn at half-time of matches and the chosen players were escorted directly for testing at the final whistle.

There, a urine and a blood sample is taken in the presence of an official from the player's team.

Dvorak said a positive test would only be announced after a second sample had been tested, unlike at the Olympics when a positive result is revealed after the first, or 'A' sample, has shown traces of a banned substance.