Drug-accused AFL coach vows to clear name

Last updated 12:41 11/04/2013
James Hird
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HORRIFYING ALLEGATIONS: Essendon coach James Hird has been accused of injecting players with banned substances.

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Essendon AFL coach James Hird says he can't wait to clear his name over allegations he was injected with a substance banned for players.

Hird has been accused of injecting a WADA blacklisted drug by Stephen Dank, the sports scientist at the centre of the Australian sports doping scandal who worked at Essendon last year.

The drug in question - Hexarelin - is banned for players but not for coaches.

Dank has told Fairfax Media that Hird used the substance last year while coaching the Bombers.

Coaches are not required to comply with the same rules as players when it comes to WADA banned substances.

But with his club under Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) investigation over supplement use while Dank was at the club, Hird appears certain to fight the claims.

"Obviously they are very upsetting claims," Hird said on Thursday morning.

"I just can't wait to get in and talk to ASADA and the AFL ... I can't wait to clear my name."

Dank also told Fairfax that before and during the 2012 season, Essendon players were given the anti-obesity drug AOD9604.

Fairfax Media says information gathered by ASADA corroborates Dank's claims.

Dank also said he gave players an extract from pig's brain, which is used to treat Alzheimer's disease, the first milk from a mother cow and a bark extract.

But Dank said nothing he gave to the players was prohibited and said the supplements were safe. 

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