Dan Carter, Joe Rokocoko and Juan Imhoff have all been reported to have failed a drugs test
Following reports in the French media that three Racing 92 players have traces of a corticosteroid found in their systems before the Top 14 Final, the French champions have defended the trio.
World Cup winner Dan Carter, former All Blacks teammate Joe Rokocoko and Argentina international Juan Imhoff are all claimed to have failed their drug tests, the day before June's final in the Camp Nou in Barcelona.
Despite the reports in L'Equipe, Carter and Rokocoko's manager Simon Porter claimed the two players were aware of the allegations. Porter told the New Zealand Herald that both players has Therapeutic Use Exemptions.
"We have been aware of the issue for a few weeks. Our understanding and assurances we've had are all the documents around TUEs were in place."
Both men were recovering from injury, which is why Porter claims the corticosteroid was found in their systems. Carter limped off early in Champions Cup Final, weeks previously.
In the statement released by the French champions, Racing claim that Carter, Rokocoko and Imhoff "are everyday examples of behaviour, generosity and ethics", but denied that fact the Therapeutic Use Exemptions were not required.
"An investigation involving Racing 92 players is today the subject of diverse comments. At the centre of the comments, the alleged use of steroids. Racing 92 would like to bring to the attention of lovers of the club, or rugby, and of sport in general, three comments:
1. We understand the stir caused by the word 'steroid'. This word has strong emotional resonance as it may correspond to immoral and illegal behaviour. It can also correspond to known, legal practices that are justified by medicine.
Its use in public should be controlled, and come with immense precaution as the damage may also leave traces if the subject was classified.
2. Racing 92 wants to affirm with the strongest force that its ethics, its sporting practice, has nothing to do with illegal practices. We are on the side of law, ethics and love of values of a clean sport. We do not shape players, we shape men. Health and morality are two essential requirements.
3. All medical procedures carried out on the players cited by the media were in full respect of the national and international anti-doping rules, both on administrative and medical levels. These treatments administered by a qualified channel, provided in response to proven illnesses, several days before the Top 14 final and not requiring a TUE (Therapeutic Use Exemption).
Racing 92 engages in collaboration will all authorities in a competent medical investigation to calm the debate and so that a full understanding is brought to the knowledge of all.
All medical procedures are clear.
Transparency will be total.
We are with alongside who are fighting for a clean and respectful sport. Juan Imhoff, Joe Rokococo and Dan Carter are everyday examples of behaviour, generosity and ethics."