Commonwealth Games bosses are promising any athlete found doping at the Gold Coast Games will be thrown out of the event.
The commitment comes after the Commonwealth Games Federation revealed needles had been found by a cleaner in the athletes’ village on the Gold Coast.
CGF chief executive David Grevemberg couldn’t reveal which nation was involved, nor where or when the needles were located but said an investigation was under way.
With just three days until the Games’ opening ceremony, he promised that investigation would be undertaken with haste.
“We’re going to work as expediently as possible, within the rights of our standard,” Grevemberg said.
“We don’t want athletes that are cheating on the field of play, or in the Games, and let’s just make that very clear.”
The Times of India has reported the needles were found where the Indian team was staying, but team manager Ajay Narang denied any links, saying they were found in a water bottle on an outside path.
“One of my guys reported that to us. I had a look and could see these were syringes,” Narang told Agence France-Presse.
“As a good citizen, I immediately went to the Medical Commission office for analysis and disposal. We didn’t open the bottle at all.”
Part of the CGF’s anti-doping policy is a “no-needles” rule for athletes at the village.
The only exemptions to that is approved medical practitioners or those needing “auto-injection” therapies for conditions such as diabetes.
The revelation comes a week after the CGF announced a strict doping protocol for the Games including the introduction of sample storage for later testing for the first time at a Commonwealth Games.
The storage will mean samples can be re-tested at a later date and if an athlete is found to have used a banned substance they could be stripped of medals, as has happened to Olympic athletes.