22-year-old sprinter Thando Dlodlo, who forms part of 4x100m relay team, has been bust for doping. As a result, his team consisting of some of the country’s most prestigious athletes, will be stripped of its World Athletic Relay Championships gold from Poland last year.
Dlodlo’s contaminated sample was retrieved at the 2021 SA National Championships in April, months before the Tokyo Olympics. After this, he competed at Poland’s World Athletics Relay Championships alongside Akani Simbine, Gift Leotlela and Clarence Munyai where they won gold.
It’s now been confirmed the relay starter tested positive for testosterone. He has been banned for two years and six months, effective from 29 June 2021 to 28 December 2023. Dlodlo should have been banned for four years but received a reduction for an early admission of guilt.
Dlodlo competed for Tuks and was considered as a rising star on the track.
His teammates also have to return their medals, SA Doping Institute for Drug-Free Sport (Saids) CEO Khalid Galant said on Tuesday.
This is the first time South Africa has suffered such a penalty after winning a major international medal.