Support of banned Australian swimmer Shayna Jack continues to grow, as another prominent figure has voiced his backing of the sprint star who is currently serving a 2-year doping ban.
Earlier this month we reported how United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) head Travis Tygart said the freestyle ace shouldn’t be put in the same category as intentional dopers. Now, New South Wales district court judge Paul Conlon has reportedly called Jack’s ban, as well as the subsequent appeal by Sports Institute Australia (SIA) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), “a despicable unfairness.”
You can read the backstory of Jack’s situation here.
As reported by News Corp Australia Sports Newsroom, Conlon said, “What they’re (SIA and WADA) saying is that even if the athlete is able to establish to the arbitrator that the substance was in their system otherwise than by of intentional use, they don’t care because they still want to give you four years if you can’t prove the origin of the substance and how it got in your system,
“If you look at the case of a person who is legitimately innocent of intentional use, in the great majority of cases that person will have absolutely no ability to know how the substance got in their system. They are in effect being asked to prove an impossibility. That in my view ranks as a despicable unfairness to the athlete.
“What seems to be lost by Sport Integrity Australia is that this athlete (Jack) has undergone a very significant punishment having missed the world titles and the possibility of an Olympic games.
“When SIA was brought into existence in early 2020 I remember a bit of fanfare about how things would be different. However, they are demonstrating all the shortcomings for which its forerunner ASADA became well known.”
A date for SIA and WADA’s appeal against Jack is yet to be confirmed.
Also associated with this story is the fact that Jack’s legal team is reportedly in communication with their counterpart of Italian swimmer Alex di Giorgio. Di Giorgio’s original 4-year ban was reduced to just 8 months based on the determination that a prohibited substance had entered his body unintentionally.