CWG court to hear needle case tomorrow

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The Commonwealth Games Federation Court will hear tomorrow morning the case of the used syringes recovered outside the rooms of Indian boxers at the Games Village. A CGF statement said the matter has been defined as an infringement of the CGF's No-Needle Policy and not an anti-doping rule violation.

The Commonwealth Games Federation's Medical Commission concluded its investigation into the alleged violation of the No-Needle Policy - the reports surfaced two days ago - and their findings were escalated to the Court. The hearing will start at 10 am local time (5-30 am IST), after which the court's decision will be communicated.

Earlier in the day, CGF chief David Grevemberg said that 'a team had broken the rules without obtaining the necessary therapeutic exemption for use of needles'. He did not name any team but ESPN understands Indian officials were summoned before the medical commission and possible sanctions will be known only once a decision is made on Tuesday.

So far, there has been no official word from Indian officials. Chef de Mission Vikram Sisodia was present at the Games Village for the welcoming ceremony on Monday evening but was among the first of the Indian contingent to leave.

With the Games just two days away, the CGF will also be keen to get the matter out of the way within the next 24 hours to avoid it from overshadowing the event itself.

There is, however, palpable and growing pressure on the CGF to put out a stern message of how strongly it views violations of any nature. Games organizing committee chairman Paul Beattie insisted that 'nothing would be covered up' and the matter would be handled in a transparent manner.

When the reports first emerged, the Indian team manager Ajay Narang denied that the syringes had been used by any Indian athlete and claimed that they were actually handed over to the CGF medical commission by an Indian player. However, India's boxing high performance director Santiago Nieva is reported to have subsequently told Australia's Seven network that the syringe was used to give a 'vitamin substance' to a boxer who was unwell. "I'm confident our boxers have done nothing wrong," Nieva said. "Since one of our boxers was feeling unwell the doctor gave him an injection."

This, however, raises more questions than it answers: On the number of syringes used/found, the actual purpose for which they were used, why no exemptions were sought if it was for a medical purpose and the lack of a clear and consistent explanation by the Indian camp.