PETALING JAYA: National coach Yang Zhuliang is hoping Malaysian female diver Wendy Ng Yan Yee (pic), who failed a doping test, will get a lighter sentence.
Wendy’s B sample came out positive for sibutramine, a stimulant commonly found in slimming products but is on the banned list of substances under the World Anti-Doping Agency.
The 24-year-old Wendy was in New Delhi, India, two weeks ago to observe her B sample opened and tested.
Wendy represented Malaysia and made the 3m springboard individual final at the Rio Olympics last year.
Zhuliang said it was a pity that the Malaysian diving team was hit by a doping incident.
“We have never had such a thing before and I vouch for my divers; they do not need to take illegal substances to help them perform.
“We are already the top diving team in the region. I am not sure how the substance was present but we have given all the medicines and supplements to the National Sports Institute for testing.
“I hope my athlete will get a lighter sentence,” said the Chinese coach, who confirmed Wendy would not be competing in the Diving Grand Prix Kuala Lumpur leg that is starting at the National Aquatics Centre in Bukit Jalil today.
Wendy will have to return the gold medal she won in the women’s 3m springboard synchro final with Nur Dhabitah Sabri at the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games in August since she failed the doping test.
Singapore’s Ashlee Tan-Fong Kay Yian will get the gold instead.
Wendy also won a gold in the 3m springboard individual but Malaysia will keep that medal because Dhabitah finished second and will be promoted to first place.
Amateur Swimming Union of Malaysia (Asum) secretary Mae Chen confirmed that they were notified of the B sample results yesterday morning.
“Asum will have a hearing to decide on the sentence but we have not decided when,” she said.
Wendy can expect to be banned for up to two years and not four years because testing positive for sibutramine is not as serious an offence as having taken performance-enhancing drugs such as anabolic steroids or erythropoietin.
Sibutramine is listed under the S6 (specified stimulants) category of the World Anti-Doping Agency code released in January.