Two and a half years later--after all of the character assassination--the players are now found not to have doped. Somebody in government needs to look at why this has happened and how can we ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
The decision by Justice John Middleton in the Essendon v ASADA case is an existential threat to fairness and justice in Australian sport. Bob Gosford explains why it must be appealed by the Essendon Football Club and coach James Hird.
Like vultures swooping on a rotting carcass the media pack descend with ferocious speed and an aggression born only of desperate need. "Feed this hungry beast!" The flock are all the while firing questions at Dank. "Why are you here Steve?," "What about the 'show-cause' notices Steve?"
Martin Hardie: "Actions like this by ASADA only serve to further undermine the public’s faith in the anti-doping system. We can only hope that the Federal Government properly reviews the operations of ASADA to restore faith in the anti-doping system and to create some semblance of fairness for athletes."
Anti doping and sporting organisations cannot do ‘whatever it takes’ to secure an anti doping conviction – they like all other organisations and persons are bound to act within the law.
The bloody-minded focus upon a possible assertion of a possible anti-doping case against Essendon players, staff or even Stephen Dank, may well be found to be lacking if and when it comes to be tested in the proper forum and at the proper standard of proof.
ASADA will fail Australian sport if it doesn't put in the hard yards to ensure that sports men and women are inside the tent, not just outside pissing in tin cups.
On the Windy Hill Four. Has the AFL won a battle but lost the war?
"The establishment of ASADA will mean that sports, athletes and the public can have complete confidence that doping allegations will be investigated and pursued in an independent, robust and transparent way," - Kevin Andrews MP, December 2005