When you compare this to the prior 2017-2018 campaign, this was an increase of three cases.
Experts state 18-35 year-olds face increased exposure socially and this is to blame for more positive drug tests.
In their efforts to protect the game, the RFU realises that they must endeavour to to have a drugs policy which protects the game, but that understands that recreational drug use in society is becoming increasingly mainstream.
The Reality of Drug Tests in Rugby
If is often the case that players are already disconnected in their clubs, before they have a positive test result for recreational drug use. The positive results aren’t usually from starters or those who are training on a regular basis. The positive test results are from players who are in some way disconnected from their clubs via injury or not being selected.
To help those that had failed drug tests in rugby, an independent specialist psychiatrist reviewed the players and came up with an ongoing plan to tackle any problems.
The RFU operates an illegal drugs programme outside of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). Throughout the 2017-2018 season, they did 332 tests and hair samples accounted for 94% of the tests. The detection period ranges from 3-5 months.
The first offence for players is guaranteed to be anonymous under the programme. Even so, first offenders are fined and have to go through a rehabilitation programme.
Johnson got a six-month suspension, which was back-dated, for using a banned diuretic. Staples got a four-year ban last April for a positive steroid test.
Best Drug Tests For Cocaine