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Shaun Cleary banned for two years after testing positive for cocaine use

Maesteg Harlequins hooker Shaun Cleary has been given a two-year ban after testing positive for cocaine use.

Cleary was suspended by UK Anti-Doping after b enzoylecgonine, a cocaine metabolite, was found in his system during testing after a pre-season friendly against Bridgend Ravens last August.

"Although Mr Cleary used cocaine three days before playing, cocaine was still in his system when he played," said Ukad director of legal Graham Arthur.

"Cocaine is banned from sport and athletes are solely responsible for what is in their system, regardless of whether there is an intention to cheat or not.

"Sportspeople have to be aware that using cocaine at any time will put them at great risk of breaking the anti-doping rules and receiving a long ban."

Maesteg Harlequins are mid-table in Welsh National League Division One West Central and Cleary, who has been banned until October, 10, 2017, is the 11th Welsh rugby player currently suspended by UK Anti-Doping.

Welsh Rugby Union group chief executive Martyn Phillips said: "This case serves as a strong warning to everyone in the game that non-compliance with anti-doping rules carries grave consequences.

"Whether intentional, or inadvertent, players have a responsibility to themselves, to each other, to their clubs and to the sport to act within the rules and spirit of the game.

"Many of the ADRV findings are intelligence-led and we will be relentless in working with UKAD to follow up leads that out players who dope in Welsh rugby."

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