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Dublin: 13 °C Thursday 24 April, 2014

Donal Óg Cusack warns against complacency in battle with doping in GAA

‘Education is the key. First of all what is legal and what is not,’ says the Corkman.

GPA chiarman Donal Óg cusack.
GPA chiarman Donal Óg cusack.
Image: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

FORMER CORK GOALKEEPER says education is the key in efforts to keep doping out of the GAA.

The Sunday Game pundit was speaking at the launch of a GAA/GPA Freestyle Hurling joint hurling initiative at Croke Park yesterday.

“We definitely don’t have a culture [of doping],” Cusack told reporters. “Education is the key. First of all what is legal and what is not.

“Because I dread the day when we get that phone call, when I player tells us he a problem, with something, that he’s after getting a letter in the door, or something, and it’s not to say that he’s clear. And we have a procedure in place, of what will happen, but still I dread that day. Because of the uniqueness of the GAA, but also that it’s so high profile. People have to go back into work, whatever.

And the GPA chairmaninsists the risk is real.

“It would be naive of any sporting organisation in the world to think that there isn’t the potential for something like that to happen. And again, it’s a big part of what the GPA has been doing over the last couple of years, delivering as much information as possible, trying to warn players of the potential pitfalls.

“But it’s a whole different world, really, with all the advancements, and the way things change, what is banned is banned is not. We’ve seen what happened with the spinters, down in Jamaica, and it is a very complicated area. But like gambling, education is the key, and that’s where our focus must be,” added the Cloyneman.

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