Hair testing to extend AFL's drug search - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hair testing to extend AFL's drug search

26/06/2008 04:16:19 PM Comments (0)

AFL players will give hair samples under a revolutionary drug-testing regimen expected to be introduced later this year.

The trial hair-testing procedure is planned for the upcoming post-season, with players to be tested in October and November.

Currently, players are given urine and blood tests for illegal drugs during the season, but are exempt during their post-season break.

Hair testing is seen as less invasive, because players will not need to be tested until after their break, as hair is believed to retain evidence of drug use for two months.

The new tests would be used by the AFL to gather evidence about the extent of player drug use during the post-season, but positive findings would not result in strikes under the league's penalty system, The Age newspaper reported.

That compromise is believed to be crucial to the AFL players' association accepting the additional method of testing.

However, the AFLPA said they were yet to finalise negotiations with the AFL.

"The AFL Players' Association has not reached an agreement with the AFL in regards to the use of hair testing of AFL players for illicit drugs," the association said in a statement.

"We are in negotiations with the AFL on this matter, as we have been for some time.

"These negotiations are not complete and are continuing."

Should the trial reveal extensive drug use, the AFL was expected to push for continued holiday testing in future years.

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