- Associated Press - Thursday, July 14, 2016

African discus champion Victor Hogan was dropped from South Africa’s Olympic team on Thursday after he failed a doping test and was banned for two years.

South African anti-doping agency chief executive Khalid Galant said in a text message to the Associated Press that Hogan tested positive for methylhexaneamine at the national championships in April, when he threw a personal best of 67.62 meters.

His B sample also tested positive, and Hogan’s sanction was decided on Tuesday. Hogan did not contest the findings, Galant said in the message.

Hogan’s doping ban was embarrassing for Athletics South Africa after it announced last week that all its events this season were free of doping. ASA said on Thursday that Hogan was axed from the Olympic team.

Hogan is a three-time African champion and retained his title at the continental championships last month in Durban, South Africa, two months after the failed test.

ASA must now consider if Hogan, who turns 27 this month, should be stripped of any titles, Galant said.

Hogan was 13th at last year’s world championships and fifth in the 2013 words. He was ranked No. 6 in the world ahead of the Olympics.

South Africa will send 137 athletes to the Rio de Janeiro Games, with its team headlined by medal contenders Caster Semenya, Wayde van Niekerk, and Chad le Clos.

Semenya has been in dominant form this season in the 800 meters and appears the outright favorite for gold at Rio. She will concentrate solely on the 800 at the Olympics, the South African Olympic Committee said, after Semenya suggested she might double up and also compete in the 400. She’s qualified for both.

Semenya was the 2009 world champion at the age of 18 before a gender-test scandal led to her being sidelined for nearly a year by the IAAF. She won silver medals at the 2011 world championships and 2012 London Olympics.

Van Niekerk is the world champion in the 400 meters.

Le Clos won gold in the 200-meter butterfly and silver in the 100 butterfly at the London Games. He’s set to renew his Olympic rivalry with Michael Phelps in Rio.

South Africa also has a strong chance of a medal in rugby sevens.

Nine-time major winner Gary Player, who is 80, will be the coach of the South African Olympic golf team.

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