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Another Kenyan athlete banned for 4 years for doping

Nairobi, Dec 8 (Xinhua) Kenyan athlete Sarah Chepchirchir, who finished 11th at the Shanghai Marathon, has received a four-year doping ban due to abnormalities in her athlete biological passport.

"Kenyan long-distance runner Chepchirchir is banned for four-years with effect from February 6, for a violation of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules," Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) said on Saturday.

World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal has decided to expunge Sarah Chechirchir's results dating back to April 11, 2018, including her 2:39:12 for the 11th in the Shanghai Marathon.

About 60 Kenyan athletes were sanctioned for anti-doping rule violations in the past five years. They include 17-year-old 800m runner Angela Ndungwa Munguti, 2008 Olympic 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop, 2016 Olympic marathon winner Jemimah Sumgong and former Boston and Chicago Marathon winner Rita Jeptoo.

Kenya intends to criminalize doping in a bid to curb its spread. The country together with Ukraine, Venezuela and Ethiopia has been clustered in category A with a high risk of cheating.

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed said that a team was working on legislation aimed at criminalizing doping by mid-2020.

"We are giving it the urgency it deserves," Mohamed told over 300 athletes in Eldoret who attended an AIU anti-doping sensitization seminar on Friday.

Current Kenyan law stipulates jail terms of up to three years for support staff found guilty in connection with doping, but not for athletes.

From 2004 to August 2018, 138 Kenyan athletes tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs, according to a WADA report published in September 2018.
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