South African cricketer Zubayr Hamza has been handed a nine-month ban by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after the batter admitted to an anti-doping violation.
“The sample provided by Hamza on January 17 contained Furosemide, a substance specified in Section S5 of the 2022 WADA Prohibited List. After accepting the suspension, Hamza’s period will start from March 2022, when he was originally banned and will be able to resume his career in December 2022”, the statement from ICC read.
The General Manager of the ICC’s Integrity Unit, Alex Marshall has opined on the matter and said that the players should remain responsible and keep a track of the substance put into their bodies.
“A timely reminder to all international cricketers that they remain responsible for anything they put into their bodies, to know exactly what medication they are taking so as to ensure it does not contain a prohibited substance and does not result in an anti-doping rule violation,” Alex Marshall, General Manager of the ICC’s Integrity Unit.
Hamza also shared his thoughts and revealed that he has never taken a prohibited substance intentionally. He added that the past few months have been difficult for him, and will share the learnings with his fellow players.
“I have never intentionally taken a prohibited substance,” Hamza said in a statement issued by the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA), “And I am relieved that the ICC determination confirms this fact. The past few months have been difficult for me on a personal and professional level, and I have learnt lessons that I will share with my fellow players.”
On March 23, the Protea batter was provisionally suspended by ICC and co-operated with ICC on the matter.
Hamza became South Africa’s 100th Test player when he made his debut against Pakistan in January 2019. His stats between January 17 and March 22 have been stripped off from his records, which included a 25 and six in one of the Test fixtures against New Zealand in February. He has played in 6 ODIs as well and has garnered 212 runs.