Bendigo Gold to educate players on drug awareness  

BENDIGO Gold players will tonight be given a timely reminder from AFL Victoria on the issue of drugs in sport.

The Gold will have its compulsory pre-season AFL Victoria session tonight, with the topics to include drug education.

The issue of drugs in sport has dominated headlines over the past nine days since the launch of the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority into AFL club Essendon and substances given to its players last year, and the Australian Crime Commission’s report into performance enhancing drugs in Australian sport.

“This session tomorrow night is timely for us with everything that has happened over the past week or so,” Gold coach Aussie Jones said yesterday.

“The VFL rules are the same as the AFL rules, so there will be no excuse for any of our players doing anything outside of the drug policy that the AFL players are expected to follow.”

Since the Essendon controversy erupted last week, it has been a wake-up call to clubs to be across all aspects of their supplement program.

‘”I’ve spoken to our fitness guys to see whether there have been any supplements used, of which there is none, other than what you can buy over the counter, such as Swisse (vitamins), so there’s no issue there,” Jones said.

“In terms of addressing it with the players, as a group they are aware that we’re not going to be pushing any boundaries.

“From my point of view as a coach and having been a player, it’s fairly simple – make sure you’re in the boundaries and you know you’ll play every week.”

Tonight’s education session at the Queen Elizabeth Oval will also focus on racial vilification.

“Even without having heard from AFL Victoria as part of the session, none of that sort of stuff, such as racial vilification, will be tolerated while I’m coaching the footy club,” Jones said.

“The AFL have been leaders in this area for a long time and I’ll be following it to the letter. Any player who thinks they can go outside it with us won’t be here for long.”

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