Ryder slapped with six-month ban

New Zealand

New Zealand batsman Jesse Ryder has been banned for six months for failing a drug test earlier this year – and will be available to play again in October, after the retrospective sentence concludes.

New Zealand batsman Jesse Ryder has been banned for six months for failing a drug test earlier this year – and will be available to play again in October, after the retrospective sentence concludes.

Ryder tested positive for two banned substances – 1-Phenylbutan-2-amine (PBA) and N, alphadiethyl-benzeneethanamine (DEBEA) – in March. He was provisionally suspended a month later, but the hearing didn't take place until August.

The 29-year-old could have been banned for up to 24 months, but the Sports Tribunal of New Zealand accepted that there had been no intention to cheat on the part of Ryder, who unknowingly ingested the stimulants via the dietary supplement Gaspari Detonate.

"I'm devastated by this situation," Ryder said in a statement issued by the New Zealand Cricket Players' Association. "I've never taken drugs and to be in this situation distresses me greatly.

"I simply took the supplement alongside a training programme I was completing to help me lose weight. I have attended anti-doping education seminars during my time in cricket and am a strong supporter of Drug Free Sport New Zealand.

"I'm aware of the precautions you need to take. I did take steps to check the supplement but ultimately it was my responsibility and I accept that. While everyone is aware of my well documented battles with alcohol, it's important for me to state that I abhor drug use of any kind, both recreational and performance-enhancing in sport."

The hard-hitting left-hander has not played international cricket since 2012 and, five months ago, was in induced coma after being assaulted outside a Christchurch bar.

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