- Associated Press - Monday, June 15, 2015

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - South Korean striker Kang Soo-il will not contest his 15-match suspension after it was revealed he failed a doping test shortly before his international debut.

Kang, 27, blamed the discovery of the banned steroid methyltestosterone on a mustache-growing cream he received as a gift. He was hours away from playing his first match with South Korea on June 11 against the United Arab Emirates in Kuala Lumpur when the Korea Doping Agency revealed his positive test.

Kang was immediately withdrawn from the squad and returned to Seoul the following day.

Players have the option of requesting an examination of a second Sample B in a bid to clear their name, but the Jeju United star - who has apologized to Korean soccer fans - has decided to accept the ban handed out by the K-League.

“I am sorry for the fans who had high expectations of me,” Kang told reporters upon his return to Seoul. “I feel sad … and disappointed with myself because I had no knowledge about what a professional player should know naturally.”

Kang has enjoyed his best ever season so far in the K-League with five goals so far in this campaign from just 12 starts.

Without Kang, South Korea defeated the UAE 3-0. It kicks off its qualification campaign for the 2018 World Cup on Tuesday against Myanmar in Bangkok.

Kang is the second South Korean sporting star to test positive for steroids this year after former Olympic swimming champion Park Tae-hwan failed a drug test in March.


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