Two of China's veteran swimmers have been banned for three years for doping, making them ineligible for the 2000 Olympic Games.
The Chinese Swimming Association imposed the bans on Wang Wei and Xiong Guoming, who each had a previous drug offense, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported late Wednesday. Their coaches, Cheng Zhi and Xu Huiqin, were banned for one year.
The ban on Xiong deprives China of one of its top male swimmers heading into next year's Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
Wang and Xiong tested positive for the performance-enhancing drug clenbuterol in out-of-competition tests in March. Athletes use clenbuterol to bulk up muscle mass.
Xiong's ban went into effect Aug. 9, and Wang's will start on April 13, 2000, when he finishes a two-year ban imposed earlier, Xinhua said. They also were each fined 8,000 yuan ($936), and their coaches were each fined 12,000 yuan ($1,445).
©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed
© 1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.