Vietnam News

5 Vietnamese doping athletes suspended, stripped of medals

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Five Vietnamese sprinters who tested positive for banned substances in SEA Games 31 last year have been stripped of medals and banned from competition for 16-18 months.

Vietnam Anti-Doping and Sports Medicine Agency under Vietnam Sports Administration on Tuesday announced the penalty, which was issued by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Sprinter Quach Thi Lan was stripped of the 400m hurdles gold medal, the 4x400m relay gold medal and the women’s 400m bronze medal, along with an 18-month ban from May 17, 2022 to November 17, 2023.

Also banned from competition for 18 months are Khuat Phuong Anh, who was stripped of the women’s 800m gold medal and 1,500m silver medal, and Hoang Thi Ngoc who lost the 4x400m women’s gold medal.

Vu Thi Ngoc Ha was stripped of the long jump gold medal and women’s three-step jump silver medal, and Le Ngoc Phuc the men’s 400m silver medal and men’s 4x400m relay silver medal. Both received a 16-month ban.

The disciplinary decisions will be published on the official website of the Vietnam Anti-Doping Agency. This penalty is lighter than the athletes expected.

Among the five athletes, Lan is a familiar face of Vietnamese athletics at regional and international competitions over the past 10 years in the 400m and 400m hurdles categories. The 27-year-old runner won the 2018 Asian Games gold medal and is the two-time Asian champion.

She has not been successful at SEA Games, only winning the gold medal at the SEA Games 31 hosted in Vietnam last year. Her best achievement earlier was the silver medals in the 400m and 400m hurdles in Myanmar 2013 and 400m silver in Singapore 2015.

The five athletes will miss the Asian Games in September in China. However, they can return in time for the 2023 Asian Indoor Games in Thailand which will take place November 17-26.

Their doping samples were tested twice a few months after SEA Games 31. Both came up positive.

In a previous report sent to the Department of Physical Education and Sports, the athletes said they did not intentionally use banned substances, but may accidentally have got them from medicine or food.

Two athletes from Thailand, two from Myanmar and one from Indonesia were also tested positive for doping at SEA Games 31.

By Hieu Luong – – June 27, 2023

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