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Three Rugby Union Players Banned from all Sport

Three rugby union players banned from all sport

Three rugby union players banned from all sport

UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) today confirmed that three English rugby union players, Andrew Quarry, Brandon Walker and Connor Stapley, have been suspended from all sport for twelve, four and two years respectively following Anti-Doping Rule Violations (ADRVs).

Andrew Quarry, who was registered with Kendal RUFC, has been banned for twelve years on account of three ADRVs, following a criminal conviction in 2013 for conspiracy to supply a controlled Class C drug.

Quarry, from Barn Holme in Kendal, pleaded guilty at Carlisle Crown Court in July 2013 to dealing anabolic steroids in a gym and was handed a suspended sentence of twelve months imprisonment.

Following the criminal conviction, a RFU Disciplinary Panel banned the former North One West Division player from 21 June 2013 to 20 June 2025 for Possession of Prohibited Substances and Methods; Use or Attempted Use of a Prohibited Substance or Method; and Trafficking or Attempted Trafficking in any Prohibited Substance or Method.

In a separate case, Brandon Walker, who was registered with Esher RFC, tested positive for the anabolic steroid oxandrolone following an out-of-competition squad test on 19 November 2015.

Walker, who played for Esher RFC in English National League Division One, admitted to using the substance and a RFU Disciplinary Panel imposed a ban from all sport for four years from 9 December 2015 to 8 December 2019.

In a third case, Connor Stapley, who was registered with Henley RFC, tested positive for the presence of metabolites of anabolic agents methandienone and mesterolone, following an out-of-competition squad test on 25 August 2015. 

Stapley, who also played in English National League Division One, argued that the positive finding had been caused by a supplement and, following a review of the evidence provided, a RFU Disciplinary Panel concluded that the violation was not intentional.

As a result, Stapley is banned from all sport for two years from 23 September 2015 until midnight on 22 September 2017.

UKAD Chief Executive, Nicole Sapstead said:

“It is important to recognise that all three cases are different, must be treated individually and cover a broad range of rule violations. 

“The Quarry case is a good result for UKAD and the RFU. Removing a dealer of anabolic steroids from the game - someone who made a conscious choice to cheat the system and the law - is a positive result for the sport.

“The case also shows just how important our relationship with law enforcement has become. By working with local police forces and the National Crime Agency, we have been able to remove a dealer from the system – someone who has absolutely no place in sport.

“The rise in the number of young people, like Brandon Walker, turning to steroids continues to be a worrying trend. But testing alone will not solve the problem. We must continue to take a preventative approach by educating players and athletes, at all levels, on the dangers of steroid use, as well as continue to work closely with law enforcement partners to target those who supply these substances.

“We would encourage anyone with information on doping to contact us. It doesn’t matter how big or small the piece of information is, please tell us. Sports, athletes and coaches can influence what we do by telling us what they know.

“At the other end of the spectrum is the Stapley case. Supplements are never free from risk and athletes must remember that they are responsible for any prohibited substance found in their system, whether it was their intention to cheat or not. Our advice is clear – maximise food and nutrition first and if you must use supplements, thoroughly research the ingredients and seek medical advice.”

The full written decisions of all three cases can be found under current rule violations

If you are concerned that doping is taking place, tell UKAD in confidence via reportdoping.com.

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