Spreading the Keep Rugby Clean message
By Frankie Deges
The third match day at the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy 2009 in the Kenyan capital Nairobi is being used as the platform to educate and raise awareness that there is no place for doping in Rugby.
All 208 players and management of the eight teams contesting the Under 20 competition will wear special t-shirts emblazoned with the Keep Rugby Clean message as they warm up for the final day of pool matches at the Impala and RFUEA Grounds on Wednesday.
The players received the t-shirts after scoring a minimum of eight out of 10 correct answers when completing a WADA computer quiz, which forms part of the International Rugby Board's anti-doping information and education programme undertaken at every IRB Age Grade tournament.
The IRB's Keep Rugby Clean campaign has the support of a number of key international players, including Felipe Contepomi of Argentina, France's Vincent Clerc, Uale Mai of Samoa and South Africa's former IRB Player of the Year Bryan Habana.
Players keen to learn
Ilaria Baudo, the IRB's Anti-Doping Co-ordinator visited each team and conducted an individual session with players and team management. Each player received an anti-doping education folder containing material translated into their own language including the WADA quiz questions and answers, brochures on the sample collection process and TUEs (Therapeutic Use Exemptions) along with a DVD on the sample collection procedure.
"The outreach programme was very well received from the players and team management. It has been great to see young players interested to learn more about Anti-Doping and supporting the Keep Rugby Clean programme," said Baudo.
This type of programme is a key initiative of the IRB's Anti-Doping Programme, which started in 2002 and since then approximately 5,760 players and team management have received anti-doping education at IRB Age Grade tournaments.
The IRB has conducted a total of 1,505 tests (excluding 2009) in relation to its Age Grade Championships since 2002, including both In and Out of Competition which has resulted in a total of six anti-doping rule violations.