Volleyball athlete David McKienzie receives four year sanction

  • Doping Violation Update

The Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) today acknowledged the decision of Volleyball Australia to impose a four-year ban on United States Olympian David McKienzie for the presence and use of two prohibited substances.

ASADA collected a sample from Mr McKienzie on 26 March 2017 during the Australian Beach Volleyball Tour Finals in Sydney.

ASADA is able to conduct tests on any athletes competing in Australia bound by the World Anti-Doping Code, including international athletes.

Mr McKienzie’s sample was analysed at the Australian Sports Drug Testing Laboratory, part of the National Measurement Institute, which detected the presence of Clenbuterol and Ephedrine.

Clenbuterol is a non-specified substance banned both in and out of competition under the S1 class of Anabolic Agents on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Prohibited List.

Clenbuterol is not approved for human use in Australia. The side effects include:

  • Headaches
  • Hypotension
  • Anxiety
  • Tremors
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea and:
  • Heart palpitations

Ephedrine is banned under the S6 class of Stimulants, and has similar side effects including:

  • Anxiety
  • Nausea,
  • Headaches and:
  • Heart palpitations

It is a threshold substance that is only prohibited in-competition when the concentration in urine is greater than 10 micrograms per millilitre, which Mr McKienzie exceeded.

As a result of the detection of Clenbuterol, Mr McKienzie received a mandatory provisional suspension in June 2017. However, he breached the terms of that suspension by competing in four overseas tournaments in the following months.

  • As such, the period of ineligibility was not backdated, and Volleyball Australia imposed a four-year ban commencing 8 December 2017.
  • Mr McKienzie waived his right to a hearing and did not contest the sanction.
  • The decision means Mr McKienzie is ineligible to participate, as an athlete or support person, in any sports that have adopted a World Anti-Doping Code compliant anti-doping policy until 8 December 2021.

Sport Integrity Australia is committed to protecting the right of clean athletes to fair competition.

If you are aware of any suspicious doping activity, you can: 

Sport Integrity Australia recommends athletes check substances and medications before taking them and to follow our advice on any sport supplements

The Sport Integrity app provides a useful resource for athletes and support staff to check substances and medications. Additionally, it provides information on how to find batch-tested supplements or see if a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) is required.

The Sport Integrity app is available for free download via the App Store and on Google Play

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