Reports suggest that Ralepelle had tested positive for a banned substance on January 17 after a random drug test at Kings Park in Durban.

It is now the third time that he finds himself in the middle of a doping investigation.

The first time was in 2010 when he and fellow Springbok Bjorn Basson tested positive for a substance called methylhexanamine on the end-of-year tour. He was later cleared as that substance was found in the Boks supplements.

Then in 2014 he was suspended for two years when he tested positive for the anabolic steroid drostanolone.

But, this time the 32-year-old insists he has done nothing wrong.

On Tuesday night he spoke to sports broadcaster Robert Marawa’s radio show, Marawa’s Sport Worldwide. The Springbok hooker said that the substance that has been found in his system was Zenarol and that it was perfectly legal.

Zenrol is a growth aid for livestock.

“The Sharks have come out and said they are willing to support me as far as they are able to,” Ralepelle said.

“Once you know you’re not guilty of anything, you’re at peace with yourself; I know I did not take anything to the detriment of my career. I got offered a three-year contract at the Sharks and I asked for a six-month contract, because I have other plans.”

Former Sharks hooker Craig Burden has been training with the Kwazulu-Natal side since the beginning of the Super Rugby season.

He is not under contract so he will have to wait to get a chance to impress.

Maybe the Sharks have brought him in as cover for Ralepelle should he get suspended.

 

Written by Carl Coertzen

Credit Image: Gallo Images

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