WHITEHAVEN RLFC have stuck by former captain Marc Shackley, following his ban from rugby league for four years after a failed drugs test.

The UK Anti-Doping test taken in September 2021 showed trace of clenbuterol, an anabolic agent.

Shackley, now 33, said he had taken a fat burner containing the agent to slim for surgery on the joint; however he could not prove the violations were unintentional and the ban was imposed.

Shackley also said he had already retired before the test and a subsequent anti-doping rule violation had been picked up in an out-of-competition test.

But an independent panel ruled UKAD had jurisdiction on the violation.

The ban he has received is backdated to October 8 2021, and will expire at midnight on October 8, 2025.

Following former club captain Marc Shackley being banned from all sport for four years the club issued the following statement.

“Marc was tested in a out of competition test after he had informed the club he had retired from the game.

"All the evidence from the club, player, doctors and physios are in his favour but the issue arose as you can be tested by UKAD up to 12 months after your contract finishes or you retirement from the game.

"The club as well as Marc did not know about this rule as this has never been explained in any pre-season meetings with the RFL. 

"Over the years in competition, Marc has taken at least one test a year and passed them all.

"We see the RFL have now made a rule that retiring players have to inform them of retirement and this was never in place for Marc and seems to have been brought out after this case.

"We would just like to thank Marc for everything he has done for this club over the years.

"The club will not be issuing any further comment on this matter at this time."

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