Although no actual date for her Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) hearing was cited, Aussie Shayna Jack released a comprehensive statement on her personal Instagram account today regarding what lies ahead.
“Now the real fight begins,” is how the 21-year-old sprinter started out her lengthy post, continuing that, “Today I received further notice in relation to my hearing at CAS.
“Nearly twelve months ago, my world was turned upside down due to allegations of using a prohibited substance in my sport. Despite a lifetime of competing clean and knowing that I had not used any prohibited substance, my life changed in an instance (sic) and I was pitchforked into an unknown world of lawyers, politics and machinations that was completely foreign to me.”
As a refresher on the case, 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.
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.
You can read Jack’s full statement below and we will provide an update as soon as the CAS hearing date is known.
“Now the real fight begins. Today I received further notice in relation to my hearing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Nearly twelve months ago, my world was turned upside down due to allegations of using a prohibited substance in my sport. Despite a lifetime of competing clean and knowing that I had not used any prohibited substance, my life changed in an instance and I was pitchforked into an unknown world of lawyers, politics and machinations that was completely foreign to me. The process has been extremely arduous and debilitating at times.
There are many aspects of the anti-doping system that are seriously flawed but possibly the worst element is the presumption of guilt that one has to bear. What sort of system infers that you are guilty of an alleged breach and the responsibility falls on you to prove your innocence?
Now though, I have an opportunity to stand and fight for my career and reputation. I intend to win this fight and put myself back in the pool and reclaim my position as a member of the Australian swim team. Everyone knows what it is like to have something precious taken away from them and I am no different.
However, regaining my team membership and opportunity to competitively swim again is not my sole objective. Throughout this ordeal, I have learnt a considerable amount about myself. I learnt that the purest pursuit for me was my sport of swimming. I learnt that my individuality and uniqueness was the grounds for my underlying strength. I became acutely aware of my residual determination and my absolute and all-encompassing desire for the truth to be revealed. My understanding of the value of positive mental health and the benefits of a strong and positive mind was reinforced. My belief in who I am and what I stand for was fortified and my understanding of how my message is one to be shared with others was cemented.
Not everyone will fight a flawed system and find themselves ostracised from their friends and support group for something they did not do. If you do though, stand up and fight and know that your honour will always be defended if you tell the truth.”