South Africa’s top sprinter banned 2 years for refusing test

STELLENBOSCH, South Africa (AP) Top South African sprinter and former African 100-meter champion Simon Magakwe has been banned two years for refusing to undergo an out-of-competition doping test.

Magakwe did not submit to a test when asked to do so by anti-doping officials at his South African training base on Dec. 22 last year, Athletics South Africa president Aleck Skhosana said Wednesday.

Magakwe appeared at a disciplinary hearing on Jan. 29, when he was found guilty and banned for two years, South Africa’s athletics federation said in a statement. He was given an opportunity to appeal.

Skhosana said Wednesday that he had been notified by the International Association of Athletics Federations that Magakwe’s window to appeal had now expired. His ban runs until Jan. 28, 2017.

”The rules must be observed. The rules are international,” Skhosana said. ”Simon is a senior athlete who has been around for many years.”

The 28-year-old Magakwe is the South African 100-meter record holder and the only South African to run the 100 under 10 seconds. He ran 9.98 at last year’s national championships.

Magakwe’s ban was announced days before he was to defend his title at this weekend’s nationals in Stellenbosch, near Cape Town.

Magakwe, the 2012 African champion, will miss this year’s world championships in Beijing and the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The test he refused to take was an IAAF-ordered test because of his world ranking, the South African anti-doping agency said.

Magakwe is able to keep any records and medals earned before Jan. 29 this year.