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AFL statement on Sydney rules breach

The AFL General Counsel Andrew Dillon has announced sanctions for breaches of the AFL’s Treatment Rules against the Sydney Swans Football Club and two of its players.

The sanctions arose out of inadvertent administrative failures to record required information during the 2016 AFL Finals Series.

At no stage have the Sydney Swans failed to adhere to WADA rules and all treatments used by their players were WADA approved.

The sanction against the Club is a fine of $20,000, with $10,000 suspended, for failing to keep and maintain a complete, accurate and up-to-date Register of Controlled Treatments in the AFL’s Controlled Treatments Register.

In this case, the AFL notes that the Club Doctor maintained his own thorough medical records of treatments legitimately provided to players. However, Clubs must also maintain such records on the Controlled Treatments Register database to enable the AFL to proactively monitor industry trends and target test players as required.

The AFL took into account that the Club’s failure in this case was an oversight during an intense pre-and-post Grand Final period, and that the Club otherwise had excellent medical procedures.

Luke Parker and Lance Franklin were both fined $5000 for failing to complete the required paperwork to record all treatments used by or administered to them on doping control forms at the time of providing a sample. This is not a breach of the WADA Code but is a breach of the AFL’s Treatment Rules, which go above and beyond the WADA Code.

In both cases the players received anti-inflammatory treatment cortisone, a WADA-compliant treatment, but inadvertently failed to declare this as required by the Rules.

The AFL Treatment Rules were introduced in 2013 to go above and beyond the WADA Code and ensure the AFL can effectively monitor football related supplements and medications provided to AFL players.