world_rugby_logoSouth Africa’s Mahlatse ‘Chiliboy’ Ralepelle has been handed a two-year ban for a doping offence, World Rugby, the sport’s global governing body, said Sunday.

He will be free to play again on April 10 2016, with his ban starting from the time of his provisional suspension last year.

Ralepelle, who won the last of his 22 Springbok caps in 2013, initially challenged his provisional suspension but gave up his right to appeal on Thursday.  

When the 28-year-old hooker underwent an out-of-competition doping control on March 19 2014, while recovering from surgery following a knee injury sustained playing for Toulouse against French rivals Biarritz in France in February of that year, the analysis of the sample returned a positive test for a metabolite of a banned anabolic steroid, drostanolone.

In a statement on World Rugby’s ‘Keep Rugby Clean’ website, World Rugby chief executive Brett Gosper said: “World Rugby operates a zero-tolerance policy on doping and players are responsible for any prohibited substance found in their body.

“Rugby is founded on fair play and the promotion of a level playing field for all players. This particular case illustrates the rigorous anti-doping programme World Rugby implements in conjunction with WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency), both in and out of competition.”

Ralepelle, who made nine Top 14 appearances for Toulouse, was released from his contract with the club by mutual consent in February last year. – Agence France-Presse

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