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UFS gets equipment worth R3,9 million to do doping tests for the World Cup
2010-05-18

One of the new state-of-the-art machines to be used for dope testing.
Photo: Mangaliso Radebe


The South African Doping Control Laboratory (SADoCoL) at the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein boasts new state-of-the-art equipment worth R3,9 million with which doping tests for next month’s 2010 FIFA World Cup will be done.

“Our new instruments are some of the best in the world,” said a proud Dr Pieter van der Merwe, Head of the laboratory.

SADoCoL, housed in the Department of Pharmacology at the UFS, has done doping analyses for many international sport events in South Africa and elsewhere in the world, including the 1995 Rugby World Cup and the Sevens Rugby World Cup in Dubai.

“Because of our international recognition and accreditation by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) the laboratory was selected to be the official doping control facility of the 2010 FIFA World Cup,” he said.

“FIFA has entered into a contract with us and they will send all the urine and blood samples for the World Cup to this laboratory. I must hasten to say that it is not only for the World Cup. We will continue with the work that we have been doing all these years regarding doping analysis in South Africa.”

“It is an honour for the Department and the UFS to offer a world-class service to a world-class association like FIFA and to be associated with a tournament of this magnitude.”

Being the only one of its kind in South Africa, and one of only two in Africa (the other being in Tunisia), it is not surprising that FIFA has entered into this partnership with SADoCoL.

“It is a well-known fact that we have been, and still are, the official doping control testing facility in South Africa for many years now. So there is also a lot of African involvement in our laboratory where African countries send samples to us for analysis,” he said.

It is not for the first time, though, that SADoCoL is involved with FIFA. The laboratory did all the testing for the Confederations Cup that was held in South Africa in June 2009.

It had just been extended to accommodate the new equipment. An official viewing session of the new facility was held last week.

Media Release
Issued by: Mangaliso Radebe
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2828
Cell: 078 460 3320
E-mail: radebemt@ufs.ac.za  
18 May 2010
 

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