Australian swimmer Shayna Jack has been given a full four-year ban by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA). Jack will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
The 21-year old sprinter from Brisbane returned home to Australia in the middle of the country’s final preparation camp for the 2019 World Aquatics Championships, at the time saying that her withdrawal was for “personal reasons.” It was later revealed that Jack had tested positive for the banned substance Ligandrol.
ASADA has not named Jack on its list of banned athletes, and are not required to do so until 21 days after the finalization of all appeals processes.
While Swimming Australia is holding firm in its stated policy to not discuss ongoing anti-doping procedures, Swimming Australia CEO Leigh Russell has stood by Jack. In spite of a number of the athletes in her country publicly attacking Sun Yang, Russell told The Australian on Thursday that nobody in swimming believes that Jack cheated, and that “we are so mindful of young people’s mental health.”
“You can have a hard line but also be human in your approach to your people. We are so quick to point the finger and be outraged and interpret people’s behaviour.”
While no direct tie exists between the two in the nature of accusation (Jack tested positive for a banned substance, Sun tampered with a sample), Jack’s case has become intertwined with that of Sun’s given the proximity of the two and the reaction of Australian athletes to Sun’s case at the World Championships while their teammate Jack is undergoing anti-doping procedures of her own. Sun was given a maximum 8-year suspension by the CAS earlier this month, though he is still appealing that ruling.
Jack’s four-year ban is the maximum allowed for a first offence and implies that not only was she unable to prove a source of contamination, but that she was unable to convince ASADA that her ingestion was accidental. Global anti-doping organizations are notoriously inconsistent about applying those standards, though, so it’s hard to draw comparisons to other cases were sentence reduction was applied.maddi
Jack will be represented by Tim Fuller in her hearing with the CAS. Fuller is the same attorney who helped Olympic silver medalist Maddie Groves successfully overcome charges of 3 missed doping tests that could have landed her a year-long suspension.
Jack is a 4-time World Championship medalist, winning 2 silver and 2 gold as part of Australian relays in 2017. She also won Pan Pac and Commonwealth Games gold medals in 2018 as part of 400 free relays.