Apoua Stewart suspended for two years

Apoua Stewart, the Coventry and Samoan international full-back, has been suspended for two years after testing positive for the banned stimulant ephedrine.


Stewart gave a positive sample to testers from UK Sport after the National League One game against Rotherham at the Butts Park Arena on September 9.


He admitted the offence when he appeared before a Rugby Football Union disciplinary panel at the Filton Holiday Inn Hotel inBristol last night


Stewart’s suspension runs from September 27 this year to September 27 2008.


The disciplinary panel comprisedChristopher Quinlan (chairman), Anthony Davies and Julian Widdowson.

The Rugby Football Union condemns the use or distribution of prohibited substances or methods as defined or listed by the International Rugby Board and the World Anti-Doping Agency.

The RFU has a robust drug testing programme operated and co-ordinated by UK Sport and complemented by an education programme designed to make the union a world leader in anti-doping.

The RFU domestic testing programme covers players from the Elite Playing Squad, U21s, U19sand7sinternationals down to junior clubs and involves a minimum of400 tests per annum.

In addition, players are tested as part of the RBS 6 Nations, Heineken Cup, BarclaysChurchill Cup, and overseas tours programmes, while theiRB manage an international testing pool of 50, comprising 30 Senior England squad players and 20 England Sevens squad players.

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