WADA chief laments 'tragic' Ricco

John Fahey comments on latest affair involving Italian

World Anti-Doping Agency president John Fahey has described as "tragic" the case of Riccardo Ricco, the Italian rider taken to hospital after what is believed to be a self-administered blood transfusion.

Ricco fell ill during training for his Vacansoleil team last Sunday. The Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) has opened an investigation into the affair.

"I'm very disappointed, it's tragic that someone can put himself in danger," Fahey said here on Thursday.

"It's dreadful to see an athlete recommit," he added, referring to Ricco's 2008 two year suspended ban for doping.

CONI on Tuesday said it had launched an inquiry "on the basis of information which has appeared in the press".

That followed a report in the Gazzetta dello sport citing an unnamed doctor at Pavullo hospital as saying that the cyclist had indicated he had effected a self-administered transfusion from a three-week-old sample at his home which he feared had gone off.

© AFP 2011

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