Wednesday, 5 March 2014

All professional cricketers from England, Wales 'hair-tested' for illegal drugs

All professional cricketers in both England and Wales have reportedly been 'hair tested' for illegal drugs, marking a significant increase in the scope of testing in domestic cricket, which employs over 400 players.

Cricket was urged to increase its testing efforts after the death of Surrey batsman Tom Maynard, who died on a railway line in London in 2012 while drunk and high on drugs.

According to the BBC, testing hair samples can reveal drug use stretching back over as long as three months and after Maynard's inquest in February 2013, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced that they planned to step up testing for recreational drugs.

The coroner urged cricket and other sports to introduce hair testing to determine long-term drug habits, following which the ECB and the Professional Cricketers Association (PCA) instigated a pilot project involving all first-class counties to discover how widely cocaine and cannabis, among other drugs, were used by professionals.

The report mentioned that cricketers were informed that the results of the pilot test would remain confidential, with counselling and treatment offered initially in the wake of a 'positive'.

The PCA will not reveal the specific results of the pilot testing scheme, but a spokesman described the results as 'excellent', the report added. (ANI)

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