Editor’s note: the initial ISL release said that Jack had been permanently suspended from the league, and our original reporting was based on that. After release, the ISL walked that back, and said it was a miscommunication internally, and that she is simply suspended for now.
The International Swimming League (ISL) announced in a press release today that Australian Shayna Jack has been suspended from the league, pending the completion of anti-doping proceedings from the “appropriate governing bodies.” The test was administered by ASADA, the Australian anti-doping agency, which means that their hearing process will decide Jack’s case.
“As I said last month, no doping control rules violation will be overlooked,” said Andrea di Nino, the managing director of the International Swimming League. “This is another case that serves to reiterate our stance on banned substances and breaking doping control rules – no such behavior will ever be condoned. From the outset, the ISL has been an advocate for transparency and clean sport. Any athletes with doping control or ethical violation records will be considered ineligible with no recourse.”
Days before the 2019 FINA World Championships began in Gwangju, South Korea, Jack and Swimming Australia announced that she would not be competing. About a week later, Jack revealed that she had tested positive for the banned substance ligandrol. An announced member of the International Swimming League’s (ISL) California-based squad the Cali Condors, Jack is now ineligible, forever, to race in the newly-formed professional league.
Weeks before the news that Jack would not compete at the World Championships, Brazil’s Santos failed an out-of-competition drug test, putting his eligibility to compete in Gwangju in question. Santos, a member of the D.C. Trident ISL team headed by Kaitlin Sandeno, was banned from competition for one year and will now miss the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
ISL founder and backer Konstantin Grigorishin said at the league’s kickoff summit in London in December that the league and its rules would not have any sympathy for those who might have tested positive for banned substances through tainted supplements or any other accidental contamination. That hard-line stance has already been tested in other cases like American Madisyn Cox and Australian Thomas Fraser-Holmes. ISL has still not publicly defined their zero-tolerance policy.
“We are committed to a doping-free future at the ISL and we completely support the League’s enforcement of its policies,” said Jason Lezak, general manager of the Cali Condors – the team that had signed Jack.
The ISL is schedule to begin its inaugural 7-meet season in October with 8 teams spread across the United States and Europe.