Jamie Acton claims rugby league bosses want to gag over drug problems

JAMIE Acton believes rugby league heads are looking to silence those who talk about the game’s drug problems after testing positive for growth hormone in a SEVEN-YEAR-OLD sample.

The former Leigh prop, who now competes in MMA, has been hit with a two-year ban on all sports after UK Anti-Doping went back to a 2014 test last year.


Jamie Acton has claimed rugby league bosses want to keep drug issues quietCredit: SWPIX.COM

It showed traces of the hormone GHRP-6, making him the first athlete to be caught after reanalysis after long-term storage of a sample.

But Londoner Acton, who was picked up by Wigan as a youngster, thinks this punishment could be the result of his past mention of drug problems in the 13-a-side code – which he claims is the Rugby Football League. wants to stay quiet.

He said: “I posted a video where I talked about all the drugs I used during my rugby career and how it negatively impacted my life.

Coincidentally, my old samples have been retested using new technology and a 2015 sample has been marked positive for GHRP-6, so I’ve been banned for two years.

“I think it’s a big problem that the RFL wants to silence those who raise awareness about the drug problems in the sport, rather than encouraging such discussions that I think can really help current and future players.

“I fully accept that I was wrong to take these drugs and have no problem accepting my ‘punishment’. However, the way this has come about is worrying.

“Let’s stop brushing up on drug problems, be it in sports or just in general. The more open and honest we can be about the subject, the better.”

UKAD collected the original sample on December 5, 2014 and nothing showed up – but they tested it again on February 5, 2021 and its retroactive ban expires on April 29, 2023.

Acting CEO Pat Myhill said: “As advances in technology enable us to better detect banned substances, sample reanalysis is a vital part of our testing strategy.

“This case shows that we will catch up with athletes who mistakenly believe they can evade detection.

“We keep many samples from different sports in our long-term storage facility and regularly perform this type of analysis.

“Athletes have a responsibility to protect their sport, as well as their own health, career and reputation.

    Acton was banned for two years after a 2014 sample was retested


Acton was banned for two years after a 2014 sample was retestedCredit: SWPIX.COM

“The rules are clear — athletes are personally responsible for what’s in their bodies and if there’s something in their system that’s off limits, they get caught.”

An RFL spokesperson said after Acton’s comments: “The RFL is committed to making rugby league a clean sport.

“The RFL condemns drug use in sport as doping harms the core values ​​of rugby league. It harms the health and wellbeing of players, the fairness and integrity of the competition and prevents anyone from taking part in a doping-free competition .

“The RFL is working closely with UK Anti-Doping, with all alleged Anti-Doping violations being reported and investigated by UKAD.

“In partnership with UKAD, we conduct a number of in- and out-of-competition doping tests. We also support UKAD’s historic testing and believe it plays an important role in informing players to ensure the sport is clean stays.

“We actively encourage anyone with concerns about doping to report it. The RFL will forward any information related to anti-doping complaints or concerns to UKAD. UKAD also has a confidential hotline for anyone to report concerns directly to UKAD.”

    Acton has retired from rugby league


Acton has retired from rugby leagueCredit: SWPIX.COM


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