Kenyan marathon runner Philemon Kacheran suspended for drug use

Marathon runner Philemon Kacheran was suspended for three years on Monday for testing positive for excess testosterone, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) announced, making him the 20th Kenyan athlete to be sanctioned this year.

Kacheran, 30, who finished fifth in the Berlin Marathon in 2021, was initially suspended in July and dropped from Kenya’s national marathon team for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

Kacheram’s suspension came just six days after compatriot Lawrence Cherono, the 2019 Chicago and Boston marathon champion, was barred from competing at the world athletics championships in Oregon, also for a doping offense.

The AIU said Kacheran admitted his anti-doping rule violation during his out-of-competition urine test in his hometown of Kapenguria, western Kenya, in April.

“On September 12, 2022, the Athlete returned a signed Admission of Anti-Doping Rule Violation…and accepted the claimed period of Ineligibility,” the IAU said.

His admission saw a standard four-year ban reduced by one year.

Kacheram’s suspension is the latest in a saga that threatens to undermine Kenya’s sporting reputation.

In 2016, the country was placed in the first category of the compliance watch list of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

In 2022, 20 Kenyan athletes, mostly marathon runners, have now been sanctioned.

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