Former WADA president hits out at Australian hypocrisy on doping
August 2, 2019
SYDNEY — After the failed drug test of 20-year-old freestyler Shayna Jack, former president of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), Dick Pound, has hit out at Swimming Australia and the country’s "holier than thou" attitude towards doping.
Speaking with Australia’s Nine Entertainment Co. on Thursday evening, the Canadian said Aussie officials and athletes are highly outspoken when it comes to accusing other nation’s swimmers of cheating, but often muted when it comes to their own.
Taking aim at Olympic gold medalist Mack Horton for refusing to share the podium with China’s Sun Yang at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships in South Korea last month, Pound said, "Australia should make it clear that they are as upset about one of their swimmers being caught for doping as they would be if the swimmer was Chinese."
"There has been a rather strange distinction between Australia’s reaction to Sun Yang and to your own swimmer."
"Australia has always been pretty firm about its opposition to doping but if the sauce is good for the goose it has to be good for the gander. If you are going to be holier than thou you should come to the discussion with clean hands," he added.
With Jack now facing a four-year ban after testing positive for the substance Ligandrol — a drug which is known to promote muscle growth and strengthen bone — it was originally stated that the two-time silver World Championship medalist would not travel to Gwangju with the national team due to "personal reasons."
Calling the situation "hypocritical" after Horton’s highly publicized dais protest, Pound said "it looks like you [Australia] have been walking both sides of the fence."
Critical of the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority’s secrecy policy, and Horton’s behavior at in South Korea, former WADA director-general David Howman said in an interview on Wednesday, "as an athlete you are entitled to freedom of speech, but there is a time and place."
"You have to balance free speech with your responsibilities as a competitor."