Why didn’t the Australian Crime Commission investigate doping in Olympic sports as well as “the big five”, rugby league, rugby union, AFL, cricket and soccer?

Remember me?

The Organised Crime and Drugs in Sport report released yesterday noted how professional Aussie sport was “highly vulnerable to organised crime infiltration through legitimate business relationships with sports franchises and other associations”.

But nowhere in the report were the Olympics even mentioned. The report examined case studies involving Rugby League and the AFL. And yesterday’s press conference extended to Rugby Union, league, AFL, cricket and soccer. The report mentioned how sport had become a highly profitable exercise at global and international levels. According to ABS statistics from 2006, sport generates $8.82 billion per year.

An Olympic victory brings about $49 million per gold medal, according to research by Dr James Connor, sports researcher for UNSW.

And that figure doesn’t even include the various sponsorship deals that winning gold brings with it.

So surely the incentive to perform at maximum capacity is pretty high. And the temptation to dope increases 10 fold.

But despite this, there was no mention of whether Aussie doping was a concern in Olympic sports. The report made little effort to find out how drugs are transported, supplied or paid for in Olympic sport.

What sports event is more lucrative than the Olympics? Countries from all over the world compete for international sporting glory.

AOC President John Coates is calling for the ACC to investigate doping in sport.

“Olympic sports would be naive to think their sport is immune from the scourge of doping and illegal betting,” he said yesterday in a statement.

“I urge our member sports to get involved with the other codes.”

The argument against investigating doping in Olympic sports is due largely to the belief that it has such a rigorous testing scheme. Much more so than some other domestic professional sports.

We used to say that about cycling. Until recently it was thought that the rigorous testing during the Tour De France had wiped out doping. Oh, how we were wrong about that.

And while we sit and watch the TV with a pack of potato crisps, bitching about which gymnast looks 14 but claims to be 21, and which weight lifter is clearly on “the ‘roids”, we reinforce the myth that Australia is clean of doping, and has been since the early 90s.

Because we’re supposedly better than that.

But if there’s anything yesterday’s report has proven, is that doping is as rife in Aussie sport as the Tour De France.

Comments on this post close at 8pm AEDT.

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    • gobsmack says:

      05:26am | 08/02/13

      If the current Australian olympians are on drugs, they’re using the wrong ones.

    • Snickersnee says:

      07:27am | 08/02/13

      May the athlete with the best Chemist win!

    • Nathan says:

      08:25am | 08/02/13

      to be fair i think its only the swimmers that need a new chemist

    • 29 gold medals says:

      08:31am | 08/02/13

      As that fine English band the verve once sang ‘the drugs don’t work they just make you worse… ’

    • Kika says:

      09:40am | 08/02/13

      I agree - that’s why you wouldn’t think the Wallabies would be doping.

    • 29 gold medals says:

      10:31am | 08/02/13

      The wallabies who England have beaten in the last three World cups and have lost two in a row to Scotland? Yeah their drugs clearly aren’t working. They need to talk to your cricket team or track cycling team or athletics team or netball team… Oh!

    • Enough is Enough says:

      11:55am | 08/02/13

      Blood testing, biological passports please what are we living in a police state now. What a joke we are talking about sports. WADA, ASASA how much are these gut getting paid. If these Dickhead sports man are stupid to use drugs the only person there are hurting is theirselves. Go and read half the adverse reaction half the medicines that we are giving for medical conditions cause. And how many people are injured through the use of them. Spend money on that.
      Even the drug testing now having to urinate in front of another person just to do your part to keep the sports clean of drugs for the sake of a few. That is people get the shits with this stuff. So innocent people have loss rights of an income if you don’t do the test. An the Humiliation of have to urinate in front of people not to prove your guilty but to prove your innocents. And now not only at their work place but anywhere and having to be tracked so to be tested at anytime.
      These guys are good at sports, good enough to earn money from it so it becomes their job. But everyone else with a job doesn’t have to give their whereabouts, they don’t have to urinate in front of people anytime they feel like turning up. So these guys have a standards high then anyone else to keep their job. Urinating in front of someone else not to prove their Guilt but to prove their Innocents. And a search for evidences without any proof and without a warrant.
      A principle of Innocent until proven guilty that normally requires the government to prove the guilt of a criminal defendant and relieves the defendant of any burden to prove their innocence.
      By not use drug testing a complete reversal
      Now Blood testing.
      No one care fix our Hospital system.

    • JoniM says:

      11:59am | 08/02/13

      @ gobsmack

      Yep !
      Seems they must have copped the placebos !
      Aussie athletes - Just great players out of luck !

    • Enough is Enough says:

      01:00pm | 08/02/13

      Your have to Urinate in front of someone else not to prove their Guilt but to prove their Innocents. What happen to the principle of Innocent until proven guilty that normally requires the government to prove the guilt of a criminal defendant and relieves the defendant of any burden to prove their innocence.Mate now they want blood testing.And they can turn up at anytime and can test you what police state are we living in. If the politicians are happy with these laws less piss test them. Anytime anywhere.

    • marley says:

      01:25pm | 08/02/13

      @Enough is Enough - WADA codes have nothing to do with government or with the presumption of innocence.  If you want to play sports, you submit to the WADA code.  If you don’t want to urinate in front of someone, then you don’t play competitive sports.  Your choice.

    • Greg in Chengdu says:

      01:34pm | 08/02/13

      Wouldnt it be hilarious, if not typical of Labor, if it came out Nova Peris had been drug cheating

    • You betcha says:

      05:39am | 08/02/13

      Speakin of match fixin, why don’t we run a rake over….




    • Chillin says:

      06:29am | 08/02/13

      Apparently you missed yesterday.

    • JoniM says:

      12:33pm | 08/02/13

      Try the current popular bet fixing targets like Australian Idol or Dancing with the Stars or The Block or the like ! The bookies already run markets on this stuff !
      Basically any contest that entails a subjective opinion is wide open to rorting , probably much easier than pulling off a contrived sports result !

    • Nathan says:

      05:43am | 08/02/13

      Seriously? You even said it yourself they targeted the largest PROFESSIONAL sports in Australia i.e. the ones that present the biggest problem. You have to start somewhere.They are also after match fixing, i don’t think is much a problem in Olympic sport.

      “An Olympic victory brings about $49 million per gold medal,” that is their training and everything else included, it does not go in their back pocket so i don’t believe that is a motivation at all. The sailors who won gold are not pocketing 49m or anything near that

      You want a report into all sports? Well how long will that take and how long will doping continue for? You have to start somewhere and this is as good a place as anywhere/

    • viva says:

      05:49am | 08/02/13

      Its funny how they don’t touch swimming ...ouch that’s a tough one

    • Chillin says:

      06:08am | 08/02/13

      “An Olympic victory brings about $49 million per gold medal, according to research by Dr James Connor, sports researcher for UNSW.  And that figure doesn’t even include the various sponsorship deals that winning gold brings with it.”

      What James Connor actually said:

      “The cost of a gold medal is an extremely difficult thing to “price”. At its simplest, we can say that taxpayers paid (roughly) $588 million to the Australian Sports Commission for Olympic sport. Divide that by the likely number of gold (let’s be generous and say 12) and we get $49 million per bauble.”

      It’s ‘costs’, it does not ‘bring’ $49 million.  Two completely different things.

      (sentences don’t start with ‘and’ either)

    • acotrel says:

      06:41am | 08/02/13

      How much does it ‘bring’ ? Do people gamble on the results of the olympics ?

    • Smith says:

      07:22am | 08/02/13

      Claire Porter = epic comprehension fail

    • tez says:

      08:50am | 08/02/13

      (sentences don’t start with ‘and’ either)
      Already been told I was wrong on this point apparently it has change since I went to school.
      Once And or But were never used to start a sentence.

    • Chillin says:

      09:02am | 08/02/13


      We don’t have to accept the ‘dumbing’ down of society, just because the technology generation is too lazy to do things properly.

    • Lie Lover? says:

      10:39am | 08/02/13

      A sentence can start with AND or BUT. I was taught this by a doctor of English. Whatever you were taught is now incorrect if it ever was to begin with.

    • Chillin says:

      04:58pm | 08/02/13

      Uh huh and I am going to believe a reference to a ‘doctor of english’ off the internet.  I can’t get a more substantial source than that.  Maybe we were taught properly AND your ‘doctor of english’ has no real clue.

    • it's_my_opinion says:

      06:28am | 08/02/13

      Why don’t we call this for what it is…......

      Diversionary tactic from our floundering Government!!!

    • Tell It Like It Is says:

      09:39am | 08/02/13

      It’s a metaphor.  Been wondering for weeks why all the exclusive focus on Armstrong/cycling alone.
      It’s a bit like the current ICAC hearings to do with NSW ALP.  If the rot is here in NSW, it’s systemic; statewide and nationally.
      But it’s all probably rationalised or informed by some Robin Hood philosophy. It’s okay to steal and cheat because it’s the downtrodden ‘working class’ party. And it’s okay/good to stealing and cheat because those awful, evil, allegedly privileged Liberal people have more.
      It’s a war. Apparently. Or at least that’s the only way the ALP see it and can survive.

    • tez says:

      11:13am | 08/02/13

      The ALP have infiltrated all sporting clubs made players take drugs, take bribes, throw games, planted secret moles, payed off investigators, corrupted the media.  Why don’t we call this for what it is…...... Paranoia.

    • Tell It Like It Is says:

      12:03pm | 08/02/13

      Gosh @Tez. I never thought that or said it.  So things ALP are even worse than we thought!

    • marley says:

      06:42am | 08/02/13

      I read the report.  It is rather general in nature, but does make mention of football codes.  It also says, however, that there are problems across other sports.  I am therefore going to take a wild guess and suggest that perhaps they focussed on the major Australian sports but actually did look at the lesser ones as well. 

      Of course other sports need to be investigated, and I would in fact be surprised if the Olympic sports are entirely clean.  My take would be that the weaker testing protocols in football, cricket, etc however, make them more vulnerable than the tougher protocols in athletics and swimming.  So I suspect the ACC is picking the low hanging fruit to start with. 

      That said, this is not about drugs in sport, it’s about organised crime in sports. lf the ACC attacks it from the organised crime angle rather than from the individual sport angle, they’re going to be following complex paths and connections which will take them wherever the criminals go, including the “Olympic” sports.

    • Tell It Like It Is says:

      01:15pm | 08/02/13

      Isn’t it about both; drugs and organised crime?  There has probably been use and abuse of illegal / sports enhancing drugs exclusive of organised crime, don’t you think?

      And maybe not be all sports (really out of my depth here as I don’t have even the smallest space in my cerebral cortex devoted to sports)  but most likely those whereby physical bulk is a determining factor. 

      Certainly some of the sports people /Olympians you see are not ‘normal’ as they present physically.  One simply does not develop that way without such unusual physiological interference.

    • RobJ says:

      06:58am | 08/02/13

      “(sentences don’t start with ‘and’ either)”

      Yes they do.

    • chuck says:

      06:59am | 08/02/13

      Looks like the ACC couldn’t catch a cold. So where are the facts and details or are they scattergun allegations ?
      I can only see the legal system getting wealthier for this circus and you can bet on that!

    • marley says:

      07:51am | 08/02/13

      The ACC has provided a public report outlining the issues;  it has also produced a confidential report naming names, that will, presumably, be used ultimately for prosecution.

    • Paul says:

      11:36am | 08/02/13

      As of this morning, the NSW Police have still not been advised of any allegation or proof despite the ACC saying it had provided such details to law enforcement agencies.  Interestingly enough the ACC has previously provided reports to NSW Police but in many cases without enough admissible evidence to actually mount a court case.

      Last night’s reports on CNN International were that doping and match fixing are rife in Australian sport.

      Our reputation overseas is in tatters and we haven’t yet got any details, haven’t had a single conviction, don’t know how many teams are involved, don’t know how many players are involved… infact we know NOTHING except that there are allegations and an investigation is “still underway”.  What does widespread mean anyway?  10?  30?  50?  500?!

      I don’t doubt that the ACC has found something bad… but it was irresponsible to start holding media conferences until they were ready to identify exactly what that something bad actually is… and PROVE it.

    • JoniM says:

      01:00pm | 08/02/13

      Spot on Paul !
      It was obviously stage managed by the government, desperate to avert media attention away from its myriad of woes. So they had all the heads of sport troop off to Parliament House for an urgent media announcement of something or other to do with sport !
      What should it matter if we trash our global sporting reputation with vague, over the top announcements like this, prior to having any specifics to share with us ? Could prove to be one of their better long lasting stuff ups since dumping the Pacific Solution ! Whatever it takes !

    • craig2 says:

      07:02am | 08/02/13

      How about the captains pick, Nova Peris? I will not stop laughing till election time watching the fallout should such a scandal take place!

    • stephen says:

      07:08am | 08/02/13

      The corruption in sport arises mainly when betting syndicates are involved, and Olympics do not allow betting.
      As well, the outcomes in Olympic events are more regular and predictable which is not conducive to bribery or payouts.

    • marley says:

      07:53am | 08/02/13

      They’re very vulnerable to illicit use of performance-enhancing drugs, though.

    • tez says:

      08:56am | 08/02/13

      Don’t you think there could be illeagl betting on the Olympics?.

    • SZF says:

      09:02am | 08/02/13

      Sorry stephen, have to disagree with everything you’ve said there. (Although I’m sure you don’t mean to suggest that there’s no betting on the Olympics!)

      “Regular and predictable” events? Steve Bradbury and the Australian men’s medly relay from Moscow would like a quick word…

      “Less conducive to bribery or payouts”...Olympic boxing, figure-skating, gymnastics and even synchronised swimming say hi too…

    • acotrel says:

      07:17am | 08/02/13

      Whay are there two separate topics on this forum, one about drug cheats, the other about spivs ? What are the moderators going to do - merge the comments at 8.30 pm ?

    • stephen says:

      07:46am | 08/02/13

      I have heard the phrase ‘wake up call’ in relation to this doping scandal twice recently : by Mr. Demetriou and now by John Fahey.
      And such a term is used to whitewash results of criminal investigations if those results are severe and warrant criminal charges.

    • Brute Man says:

      07:53am | 08/02/13

      I think the ACC have used the correct approach. Create a report where the major sporting codes were heavily investigated, whilst investigating all sports to some extent. Release a report containing no specific information pertaining to one code/sporting club/athlete. Offer an amnesty period for anyone that supplies information of comes forward as a drug cheat.

      Once you’ve exposed people who were unknown to the ACC by the use of amnesty, go after the known dopers who weren’t smart enough to come forward and throw the book at them!

    • marley says:

      07:57am | 08/02/13

      I was listening to the radio earlier this morning:  a reporter was interviewing a representative of (I think) ASADA, and asked whether the investigation had revealed problems only in football and cricket, or extended further.  The rep said, flatly, it affected “all sports.”  So, I suspect this whole article is moot.  The Olympic sports would be part of the investigation.

    • tez says:

      09:06am | 08/02/13

      I heard an interview on the radio this morning with a man from one of the betting agencies, he claims that all the very,very large bets mostly go through illegal setup in Asia.

    • marley says:

      11:34am | 08/02/13

      @Tez - well I seem to have read somewhere that much of the match fixing in European soccer has links to Singapore, so I’m not surprised.

    • Ian1 says:

      08:01am | 08/02/13

      If organised crime can compromise the outcome of a sporting fixture once they have a capacity to blackmail, how much moreso the legislative outcomes of Politicians who’ve accepted bribes of cash or the flesh?

    • Joe says:

      08:03am | 08/02/13

      One of the chief causes of problems here is money. Where the big money goes so also goes the incentive to cheat. Where criminal money goes comes even bigger incentive to cheat. Where gambling takes over criminal money is sure to follow very closely behind.  There are a couple of obvious lines of action to take here, and I think we can be sure they will be largely ignored by those in power.

    • Nostromo says:

      08:22am | 08/02/13

      Why would we investigate olympians about drugs, when we all know they are incredibly hard-working amateur sports (wo)men, only in it for the love of competition, fair play & betterment of mankind, and they make no money whatsoever from their chosen passion…?
      Plus there’s the saintly IOC which runs the whole show, so we know we are in the best hands possible, right up there with the Pope & the Catholic church….errr…right?

    • Chillin says:

      08:41am | 08/02/13

      Why do I have no regard for what Gus Gould says, oh that’s right the Andrew Johns love in, years ago.

    • Tim says:

      09:03am | 08/02/13

      I’m curious about the deafening silence from our fearless sports journalists prior to yesterday’s bombshells.
      Surely the absence of thorough investigative reporting couldn’t have been due to a reluctance to bite the hand that feeds them. Could it?

    • Chillin says:

      09:34am | 08/02/13

      There are no investigative journalists left.  It’s all cut and paste jobs.

    • marley says:

      09:48am | 08/02/13

      It seems to me to be a bit the Phil Liggett syndrome:  the journalists love the sport and find themselves captives to it.  They lose their objectivity and their cycnicism, and are no longer able to see the obvious:  that there’s big money for individuals, for teams, for gamblers and criminals, in rorting the system, and that the safeguards are manifestly inadequate.

    • Chillin says:

      10:25am | 08/02/13

      It also pays their income stream…therefore they don’t want to rock the boat.

    • Rose says:

      10:42am | 08/02/13

      There’s also the Jason Akermanis syndrome, draw attention to a problem in your sport and you get labelled a nut case troublemaker or some such. Not saying Akermanis isn’t a bit nutty and that he isn’t looking for a bit of a stir, but in his own very clumsy way there have been times when he’s raised important issues and asked important questions.

    • Nick says:

      04:07pm | 08/02/13

      I’m always intrigued by the absence of investigative journalism into sports too - anybody who has explored a career as a professional sportsman (or woman I guess) knows that drugs are rife.  Who’s on various types of juice is pretty much an open secret, contracts routinely stipulate submitting to team medical procedures without question, vitamin injections are understood to come with a massive set of inverted commas, omerta is strong, you’re just a kid when most of the critical selection occurs and most of us will do anything to score that first sponsorship…why do journalists let this happen?  Or are they genuinely suprised?  Guys like Sharwood, Guiness, Liggett et al seem like they never suspected the sea of shit professional sport is built on.  Do they spend too much time sucking at the teat of the “stars” and not enough time talking to the people who walk away?  Being gossip columnists and not journalists?  I hope a few of them are taking a good hard look at themselves.

    • Suzanne says:

      09:14am | 08/02/13

      This whole thing was bought up yesterday to divert attention from Gillard and Swan etc. If the have eveidence, make arrests and name clubs and name. If not, shut up, cause you are damaging sport.

    • PsychoHyena says:

      10:20am | 08/02/13

      @Suzanne, what would you have preferred? They kept it hidden so you could then accuse the Government of hiding the outcome of the investigation?

      Given that the outcome is preliminary and they are more interested in the crime syndicates behind the scandal than the actual dopers.

      The question is though, have the sports-people involved broken the law or just broken the code of conduct for their sport? You can’t arrest someone if there is no law for them to have allegedly broken.

    • Robert S McCormick says:

      09:29am | 08/02/13

      The media has told us that one of those so-called “Sports Scientists” later revealed he was not a member of the peak sports science bodies, “Exercise Sports Science Australia” or “Sports Medicine Australia”. he is not currently registered as a pharmacist, or any other practitioner with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency. Doesn’t that mean you are not, under any circumstance, allowed to provide any Health or Medicine related services?
      One of the “drugs” reportedly used was “Calves Blood” - No, it’s not a drug it is quite simply blood drawn from calves - you know, they grow into cows & bulls, we kill them & eat their meat. Since when was it either ethical, or indeed legal, to inject human beings with the blood of a completely different species?
      Hospitals have been sued for accidently giving patients human blood which is not the same blood-type as that of the patient.
      Of course those who are supposed to have a “Duty of Care” towards their players are all running for cover.
      The real tragedy is that those Sports which are clean will get caught up in this deliberately created mess.

    • KJ says:

      12:41pm | 08/02/13

      Robert,  I may be wrong but I think blood products from calve’s blood rather than the blood itself was injected.  This doesn’t make it any more acceptable and if this is the products referred to as ‘not approved for human consumption’ then those responsible should spend some time in jail.  There are very good reasons for testing new medicines/supplements etc before allowing human consumption.

    • Chillin says:

      09:46am | 08/02/13

      The AFL who for YEARS have told us they have the strictest drug protocols in Australia are apparently reviewing their policies and implementing new measures.

      I thought they were the strictest drug protocols in Australia?

      Demetriou says whatever crap he likes and no one challenges him.

    • Graeme says:

      10:57am | 08/02/13

      Demetriou is untouchable, or so he thinks. Just like his little mate Anderson, before he left the roost. Dictators of the modern era.

      If the AFL already has “strict” drug protocols, then surely they really wouldn’t need to be changed. I guess that the AFL aren’t on their own, the MLB in the USA makes me wonder if they are dead serious with their doping policies. For example, Melky Cabrera from the SF Giants gets done last season for taking a PED, is found guilty, and gets a whopping 50 game suspension. Not even a third of the season and he can play on. Hardly dented his paycheck in reality.  Hmmm.

      Drugs are drugs, ban the offenders for life.

    • Chillin says:

      12:07pm | 08/02/13

      Well the MLB on recently bowed to the PC crowd, you used be able to use illegal drugs.  For a long time the only ban was due to a positive test to marijuana - steroids were open slather.

    • Kerryn says:

      09:51am | 08/02/13

      Many people have a rival, someone who is always just that little bit better, who nearly always beats us or does better than us.  We try to improve ourselves in the hopes of being said rival.  Imagine being a clean player, but finding out the only reason your rival was always better than you was because they were doping.  What a slap in the face.

      Imagine your team mates, who you trust and are friends with.  Imagine they were doping, perhaps even keeping you out of the team with their enhanced performance.  Not fair in the slightest.

      Imagine you’re a little kid, who looks up to their Dad, only to find out that Dad has been cheating.  Devastating.

    • fml says:

      10:12am | 08/02/13

      My dad was awful at everything, it would’ve made me proud if he cheated!
      Just to see the smile on his face :D

    • Graeme says:

      01:37pm | 08/02/13

      I must challenge my Dad, he’s on the higher side of 80 and is still extremely good at his chosen sport of Lawn Bowls. He must be taking drugs. Or is it the few beers he consumes…...

      It’s the same for me, whenever I manage to score under a hundred at golf, I’m suspected by my sons of cheating, along the lines of I can’t count correctly. And here I was thinking all along that the few beers I consume might have a lot to do with that…...

      Damn beers, should be banned!

    • jorgen flenswing says:

      10:21am | 08/02/13

      South Africa managed a Truth and Reconciliation commission covering murder bashings and general nastiness and forgave those who confessed…....in Australia a couple of overpaid jocks put some stuff in and the media pollies et al go troppo when they “find out”....pplease…

      The breast beating postureing is truly pathetic..

      The best thing to do is so simple in my view… .most of the answers are known by the atheletes themselves…...who when where what…offer them alone a limited amnesty….interview them all in the pro level. in each of the main sports..its such a no brainer…instead the muppets in charge are threatening them ...only going to make them more reluctant to come forward…

      The dull bureaucratic mind at work…..

    • marley says:

      11:41am | 08/02/13

      Well, I’m not sure how you expected the media to respond when the powers that be hold a press conference stating that there is extensive involvement of organised crime in elite (and not so elite) level sports in Australia.    It’s not just about a few overpaid pros taking drug: it’s about players at the club level taking performance enhancing substances;  it’s about match fixing; it’s about criminal organisations smuggling drugs on a large scale;  it’s about corruption in sport.  Do you really think that should be left to a small column in the sports pages?

      And from what I’ve read, those who’ve been involved are being given an ultimatum:  talk now and get a reduced ban, or don’t take and face four years out of the game.  Seems fair enough to me.  But whatever route sporting bodies take, it’s got nothing to do with

    • Aussiewazza says:

      10:27am | 08/02/13

      It’s not sport anymore, it’s business.

      The great days where school kids looked up to and tried to emulate their local heros, and teams were made up from locals competing with other localities are gone.

      You went to school, played in the under 8’s 9’s etc. then after leaving, got a job and played factory v/s factory or whatever. Cricket summer/football winter.

      If you were good enough you got into your suburb or area team. All your fans knew you because they went to school, drank and/or worked with you or your dad.

      Today, apart from State of origin you will find most teams made up of players drawn from God knows where. Bought in for the show.

      With no local pride and players knowing their peak life is short,  the sole motivator is money and to maintain the pace some need and will accept a little ‘help’. Then, seeing what is happening with certain players, it’s ‘If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em’.

      Knowing that as fast as one chemical is discovered and banned, another will take its place, maybe the answer is to lift ALL restrictions for players and treat dope in a similar manner to better shoes or jockstraps.

      My grandfather raced a single speed, fixed wheel bike. What cyclist today could get the speeds attained on todays bikes riding granpa’s bike?

      Professional sport is simply a money grabing entertainment. As false as professional wrestling. The play and the result is programmed to pull the maximum money from the plebs.

      I’m not knocking it. Go and watch if it gives you pleasure. But know it for what it is.

    • Lie Lover? says:

      10:35am | 08/02/13

      OMFG!! It doesn’t bring $49M it costs that much to tax payers, but of course that doesn’t take into consideration that just maybe we might like the odd silver and bronze thrown in for good measure. In future try to read the research before you write your article.

    • du says:

      10:37am | 08/02/13

      Funny, thereis no mention of horse racing

    • 29 gold medals says:

      11:00am | 08/02/13

      This whole thing is classic Aussie response to the past decade of sporting subjugation at the hands of your erstwhile colonial masters. Just wasn’t in the east Germany of the pacific’s script of physical and moral superiority was it?  After the annus horribilis of 2012 and with two, count them TWO ashes series against an ascendant England plus a lions rugby tour imminent armed with sackfuls of salt for those convict wounds you come up with this genius plan! make out that your otherwise naturally superior athletes have been corrupted by shadowy gangsters while heavily hinting if sweet innocent Australia is routinely doping then just imagine what the evil rest of the world is up to.

    • marley says:

      02:12pm | 08/02/13

      I’ve lost count of the number of British athletes who’ve been banned over the last 10 or 15 years for illicit drug use.  And isn’t European soccer in general under a massive investigation right now for match fixing?  Pull your head in.

    • KJ says:

      03:51pm | 08/02/13

      Not sure what you are on about when referring to the Ashes.  Australia haven’t played an Ashes series for years.  Played a lot of tests against South Africans though.

    • Sports chick says:

      11:05am | 08/02/13

      Stick to your social media beat honey.

    • stephen says:

      06:11pm | 08/02/13

      Climbing fences, soon, may be called to the Olympics.
      Do you think you may show us how it’s done, sweetie ?

    • Arnold Layne says:

      11:38am | 08/02/13

      The Olynpics aren’t targetted because they have actually done a comparatively good job in cleaning up their act.  A high profile once every four years event is not nearly as attractive to those flogging this gear as, with relative anonymity, infiltrating a major football code with loads of money and players with a club culture of “I’m just hear to play footy, I do what the coaches and docs tell me.”

    • Chillin says:

      12:12pm | 08/02/13

      The Olympics haven’t done a comparatively good job, the drugs have advanced and they aren’t detecting them.  To believe otherwise is ‘Lance Armstrong’ thinking.

    • Tbird says:

      12:25pm | 08/02/13

      I had to laugh this morning when I heard on SEN one of the Beach Volleyball ladies speak about how unfair this is on all sports, when according to her the report is talking about the football codes. I thought what a dill, you’d have to be on drugs to play professional beach volleyball in the first place.

    • KJ says:

      03:41pm | 08/02/13

      Why is that Tbird?

    • Robert S McCormick says:

      12:45pm | 08/02/13

      Want to get Organised Crime, Drugs & Game Fixing out of sport?
      (1) Ban Betting/Gambling on All Sport
      (2) Take the Money out of it.
      In recent times it has been leaked that “Such & Such” player is being paid $900,000.00 for a Season of AFL.. No-one, & certainly no twenty-something, is worth that sort of money.
      Reduce the wages & the AFL & others codes will be able to reduce the now obscene ticket prices they charge.
      Take the Money out & players will not feel obligated to take performance Enhancing Drugs - be they chemicals or the blood of young, probably male, calves.
      Scrap the silly “Three Strikes & you are Out” nonsense.
      Bring in “One Strike & you are out for Life” and make that “Life” just that with none of that 25 years crap.
      Personally I don’t believe for one second that all those administrators, coaches etc. have not always known of, & colluded in, the taking of all those totally unnecessary drugs, pills, powders, drinks, injections, hormones & other artificial products which make their players run faster, kick harder, swim faster, ride faster & do them all for longer & longer periods without resting.
      Oh! they are all scrambling like mad to cover their collective arses & proclaiming their innocence, their lack of knowledge blah, blah, blah but can we believe any of them? I don’t think so.

    • marley says:

      01:23pm | 08/02/13

      @Robert S. McCormick - while there’s something to be said about some of your comments, I’d have to point out that, while we could ban gambling here, we can’t ban it offshore or online, and that’s where the problem often lies. 

      And the “three strikes” policy is for recreational drugs, not for performance enhancing ones. If you’re caught taking steroids, you’re going to get a ban.

      That said, I agree entirely that there is no way the sports establishment couldn’t have had some idea of what was going on.

    • Ken Oath says:

      01:47pm | 08/02/13

      My advice. For a team sport follow rugby union. Those guys still think like amateurs and bottom line is without footy most of them have heaps of other options and can do heaps of other things. Unlike some in other professional codes if not for their sporting ability they’d be boiling the billy for the gangers on the Ipswich railway line.

      No disrespect to honest railway workers but where there is enormous perceived gain many will downplay the risks of getting there.

    • RonaldR says:

      01:47pm | 08/02/13

      this whole drug beat up at the moment and the way the media was informed is like selling a meat sandwich with no meat in it ———Alternative motives here

    • workitout says:

      03:12pm | 08/02/13

      Why because Abbott didn’t get a photo opp today.


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