Pippa Manby obtains substantially reduced ban for professional cricketer

Pippa Manby has recently represented Derbyshire County Cricketer, Tom Wood, in anti-doping proceedings brought against him by the ECB. Mr Wood tested positive for banned substance, terbutaline, which (it was undisputed) had entered his system via his asthma inhaler.  As a predominantly second-team player, Mr Wood, considered that he was able to apply retrospectively for a Therapeutic Use Exemption in relation to his use of his inhaler. However, as he had unexpectedly been called up to play for the 1st XI on a number of occasions due to absences at the Club from Covid, injury and selection for the Hundred, his retrospective application was refused. The ECB charged Mr Wood and at the hearing, proposed the maximum sanction available where it is accepted that a player did not intend to cheat of 2 years ineligibility. Pippa secured a six-month ban, backdated by one month, enabling Mr Wood to return to play almost immediately following the decision and to play for the majority of the 2022 cricket season.  The decision contains interesting comments on the clarity and effect of the ECB anti-doping rules, particularly, as regards the distinction between first and second team players (a distinction which is not known to exist in any other sport). The sole tribunal member, David Casement QC determined that this lack of clarity merited further consideration from the ECB and was ‘not a satisfactory state of affairs’.

BBC link: click here

Decision in full: click here