Andre Russell, the West Indies allrounder, has been slapped with a one-year ban by the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel after being found guilty of breaching the anti-doping agency code.
A three-member tribunal comprising Hugh Faulkner, Dr Marjorie Vassell and Dixeth Palmer handed down the sentence at the Jamaica Conference Centre on Tuesday (January 31). The ban will be effective until January 30, 2018.
Russell had failed to file his whereabouts form on three occasions in 2015, which under World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules is equivalent of testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance. In March 2016, the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) was forced to press legal charges against Russell for missing the tests despite repeated reminders.
In his defence, Russell, who is recovering from a hamstring injury that forced him out of the Big Bash League in Australia earlier this month, had told the tribunal that he had not been properly trained to file the whereabouts, and that he had authorised his agent to file his whereabouts as he was busy with cricket commitments.
Russell has played only one Test for West Indies, against Sri Lanka in 2010, but has carved out a career as a much-sought after allrounder in the shorter formats of the game with his explosive batting, electric fielding and ability to generate good pace.
He was instrumental in Sydney Thunder winning their first Big Bash League title in 2015-16, and had also helped Islamabad United win the inaugural Pakistan Super League in 2016. He has also been part of title-winning squads with Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League and Jamaica Tallawahs in the Caribbean Premier League.