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Brazilian judo hero Rafaela Silva admits positive doping test

Brazilian judo hero Rafaela Silva admits positive doping test

20 Sep 2019 23:35
IJF Gabriela Sabau / International Judo Federation

Brazil's Olympic judo champion Rafaela Silva on Friday admitted testing positive for the banned substance fenoterol, which is used to treat asthma, but insisted she was innocent, French agency AFP reports. Rafaela Silva who won the bronze medal at the Tokyo World Championships said: "I am clean and I will continue to train and fight to prove my innocence," Silva told a news conference.

"I tested positive for fenoterol... but I did not use this substance, I am not asthmatic."

Fenoterol is on the World Anti-Doping Agency's list of banned substances.

Silva, who won Brazil's first gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics, tested positive on August 9 during the Pan American Games where she won the 57kg category.

She went on to win bronze at the World Judo Championships in Tokyo, where she hopes to defend her Olympic title next year.

A second test on August 29 did not show the presence of fenoterol, said Silva, who suggested she may have been exposed to the substance by a friend's baby.

Her lawyer Bichara Neto told reporters the judo star had not been suspended.

In January Jessica Pereira was suspended after testing positive for using a Diuretic to lose weight,

The Brazilian Judo Federation reacts with an official statement: "The Brazilian Judo Confederation will closely follow the progress of the legal process regarding the adverse analytical result revealed by judoka Rafaela Silva at a news conference on Friday. Rafaela is one of the largest judokas in Brazil, an example of overcoming on and off the mat. CBJ will provide the support you may need to resolve the case."

The next IJF World Tour is the Grand Slam in Brasilia in two weeks time.

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