Tennis: British player Dan Evans banned for one year after positive cocaine test…

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Tennis player Dan Evans has been banned for one year after testing positive for cocaine, which he accidentally mixed with the medication in his washbag.

British number four Evans provided the positive sample before competing at the Barcelona Open on April 24. His suspension has been back-dated to begin from that date.

The 27-year-old will therefore be free to return to competition from April 24 2018.

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) explained the suspension saying that because cocaine is not performance enhancing and it was taken outside of competition, a potential four year ban was reduced to 12 months.

They also said that Evans ‘promptly admitted his violation’ and then accepted his explanation of how the cocaine got into his system adding that he bore ‘no significant fault or negligence for the violation.’

Along with the suspension, Evans has also had to forfeit €103,890 (£92,205) of prize money and the ranking points gained between the date of the test and the announcement of the positive finding in late June.

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According to the decision announced by the ITF on Tuesday, Evans said ‘leftover’ cocaine had accidentally mixed with permitted medication on the ‘same pocket of his washbag’.

Evans also said that he took those tablets daily from April 20 2017 to April 24 2017 – the date on which he provided his sample.

Expert Dr Pascal Kintz successfully proved that the amount of cocaine ingested by Evans was no more than 1-3 mg – a quantity which was ‘inconsistent with knowing ingestion and consistent instead with inadvertent contamination’.

Before the incident, Evans had reached a career high of 41 but is now down to 108th and will slip even further down the rankings before he is eligible to return to competition in April 2018.

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