Chinese Olympic volleyball champion banned for doping

Yang Fangxu (right) was a member of the Chinese team which won the gold medal at Rio 2016. (AFP Pic)

SHANGHAI: A key member of China’s Olympic champion volleyball team has been banned for four years after taking a banned substance, the country’s anti-doping agency said.

Yang Fangxu will now not be able to help China’s women defend their title at the Tokyo Games next summer and her career is almost certainly over.

Following out-of-competition testing in August last year, the 24-year-old tested positive for the prohibited blood-booster erythropoietin (EPO), said CHINADA.

Yang scored three points in the final of the 2016 Rio Olympics as China beat Serbia to gold.

She is banned until 2022 but had already disappeared from China’s national team prior to Tuesday’s announcement.

CHINADA also said that it had banned ice hockey player Li Jiaxin and student athlete Su Guanzhong.