Concerned with the six-month suspension of National Dope Testing Laboratory’s (NDTL) accreditation by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the BCCI in a letter to National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) has sought to know about the “chain of custody” of the samples collected at domestic events during this period.
The WADA took the decision owing to non-conformities with International Standard of Laboratories (ISL) as identified during a site visit. The suspension is a setback to India’s anti-doping movement with less than a year left for the Olympic Games.
In a letter to NADA DG Navin Agarwal, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri wrote: “We request you to kindly let us know how this suspension will affect samples collected by NADA at BCCI domestic cricket tournaments.
“Since NDTL is unable to test the samples of all cricketers, what is the way forward to ensure a strict chain of custody and timely analysis of all samples,” Johri said.
The BCCI had for long strongly resisted coming under the ambit of NADA even though their samples collected by International Dope Tests & Management (IDTM) of Sweden was tested at the NDTL. Johri’s letter came after sports secretary Radhey Shyam Julaniya told reporters that the agency has met its initial target of collecting 3000 samples for the year, which casts doubt on how many samples they will collect during BCCI’s domestic season.
The NADA can get the samples tested at an overseas WADA accredited lab and Bangkok seems a feasible cost-effective option at the moment. The NADA on its official facebook page had earlier issued a press release, stating that they would start sample collection during the ongoing Duleep Trophy.
The DCOs have not come for the first two Duleep Trophy matches and it is to be seen if they come for the remaining two games (including final) in Bengaluru. Also BCCI’s domestic events will continue till March and the suspension of NDTL continues till February 20.