‘I Deserve To Be There’: Shayna Jack Hopes She Will Be Allowed To Swim At Tokyo Olympics
After a routine drug test threatened to cut short her swimming career, Shayna Jack is fighting to prove her innocence and hopes that her name will be cleared in time for 2020.
Jack faces a four-year ban after a prohibited drug, Ligandrol, was found in both her A and B samples back in June.
But the 21-year-old champion swimmer is adamant she has never purchased or taken the substance.
The drug is similar to steroids and designed to build and repair muscles.
Speaking to The Sunday Project's Lisa Wilkinson, Jack opened up about how her "whole world changed" when she was called back urgently to her hotel while at a training camp earlier this year.
Initially thinking she had been called in for a random drug test, Jack said she "lost control" of all her emotions when she was told something prohibited had been found in her sample.
"I thought they were wrong when they told me," Jack said.
"I said you’ve got to be wrong, I hadn’t bought this, I wouldn’t buy this."
Jack said she was immediately sent home to Brisbane and told that her results wouldn't be released publicly until she was ready to deal with the fallout and to tell her swimming family herself.
But less than a month later, her confidential results were leaked and her name made national headlines.
"I wasn’t actually watching the news," an emotional Jack told The Sunday Project.
"The only reason I knew was because I was on my phone and someone had gone onto my Instagram and someone had commented: 'you’re a drug cheat and kill yourself," she claimed.
"I lost control of all my emotions and I haven’t had much control of my emotions since that day."
Jack said she's still hopeful that she will be given a chance to compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games, despite having tight restrictions on when she can and can't train.
I can’t even stand on the pool deck without getting in trouble.
"I don't even know if I can see my coach without getting in trouble," she said, adding that she's only allowed to swim at certain hours of the day.
No date for a hearing with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has been set. But Jack said she is determined to prove her innocence.
"My dream has always been the Olympics," she said.
"Whether it be Tokyo or in another four years time, I deserve to be standing behind those blocks wearing the green and gold and I will be back."
Leigh Russell, chief executive of peak governing body Swimming Australia, told The Sunday Project it continues to provide support to Jack.
Watch Shayna Jack's full interview with Lisa Wilkinson on The Sunday Project from 6:30pm on 10.
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