Image courtesy of: Zimbio
West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell has admitted that he is hoping not to be banned by an independent anti-doping tribunal.
Russell could be suspended for up to two years after he missed three drug tests and failed to make his whereabouts public.
Three missed tests in a 12-month period is seen as a failed drug test under the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules and regulations.
Speaking about the situation, Russell told the Jamaican Observer: “It’s been stressing and hard playing cricket and all that’s in the back of your head. But at the end of the day you have to do what you have to do.
“It’s like a big cloud over my head. If I get a ban then definitely I’m out of cricket [during the period of the suspension]; I mean all formats. So I’d just love to know I’m back and I can represent Jamaica Tallawahs, West Indies, and all the other teams I play for in the world.
“Honestly, I’m being positive and I haven’t been thinking about anything else that I want to do apart from playing cricket; doing what I love. I have so many fans out there and they would be disappointed, just as I would be. I just want to remain positive at the moment. I think I can [avoid a suspension] with the help of God; I think it’s out of my control, so I just have to wait on what happens on Tuesday.”
The entire incident began in March last year when the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) pressed a legal charge against Russell for failing to file his whereabouts on January 1, July 1 and July 25.
Russell was reminded several times via email, phone calls and letters, but despite this, he claimed that he had not been told the proper procedure to file his whereabouts. Furthermore, he said that he had given his agent and travel agent permission to file his whereabouts for him as he was busy playing cricket.
The three-member anti-doping tribunal consists of Hugh Faulkner, Dr Marjorie Vassell and Dixeth Palmer.