World Cup gets all-clear on doping front

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Lynn McConnell     02 Dec 2015     Getty Images

World Rugby announced that samples had been taken across all 20 participating sides with 200 in-competition and 268 out-of-competition samples taken.

While none produced a positive test, all samples which included 317 urine and 151 blood samples will be stored for future re-analysis.

The tournament testing programme was an extension of World Rugby's existing anti-doping programme which saw more than 1300 tests taken across teams in and out of competition between January and September.

As part of the Keep Rugby Clean anti-doping education programme more than 600 players and 500 team officials undertook mandatory education before the World Cup tournament.

World Rugby chairman Bernard Lapasset said: "Doping is a major threat to the integrity of sport and World Rugby is committed to a prevention programme of targeted testing and global education to ensure that players at all levels understand the performance and health importance of maintaining a level playing field for all."

Lapasset said while there were no adverse findings before, or during the World Cup, the organisation could not afford to become complacent.

As a result they have increased their budget and are committed to storing samples for potential further analysis.

"Our Rugby World Cup 2015 programme was based on intelligence-led testing and reflects our commitment to ensure that we are ahead of the curve in this area," he said.

The organisation's approach was commended by the director-general of WADA, David Howman.

"With doping in sport very much in the spotlight, it is more important than ever for a sport as global as rugby to ensure it has a programme that combines intelligence-led testing with a strong education initiative such as Keep Rugby Clean.

"World Rugby has taken a positive step in increasing its resources for testing and education, and retaining samples for future analysis as is encouraged under the revised World Anti-Doping Code," Howman said.