WARRIORS midfielder Devon Chafa tested positive to a prohibited substance linked to medication he is taking, during a routine Fifa doping exercise during the 2014 World Cup qualifier against Egypt, but is not facing any ban — at least for now.
Chafa was part of the Warriors team that was preparing for the June 9 World Cup match which they lost 4-2 at the National Sports Stadium.
This has led to news Zimbabwe might be disqualified from the African Nations Championships finals after they qualified on Sunday beating Zambia 1-0 at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.
This has created excitement on the social media in Zimbabwe and Zambia, with a website from the losing country, without naming any player, even speculating that the Warriors had fielded an ineligible player.
Yesterday, both Zifa and the Football Association of Zambia dismissed the reports as lacking substance.
Zimbabwe ensured their third consecutive finals after a sweet victory at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in new coach Ian Gorowa’s first competition in charge after replacing Klaus-Dieter Pagels after the Cosafa Castle Senior Challenge Cup in July.
In a detailed statement, Zifa communications manager Xolisani Gwesela said last night Chafa had not been banned and they had not breached any rules.
“Fifa wrote to Zifa on July 17 2013 to the effect that during a doping procedure, they found a prohibited substance. This substance was linked to Devon Chafa. Fifa then requested our team doctor Nicholas Munyonga to look at the letter and provide Fifa with the player’s proof that he was taking medication linked to that substance.
“Then Dr Munyonga wrote to Fifa on July 23 about any medications not declared, but taken prior to doping tests.
“Munyonga confirmed that the player and his family’s medical practitioner had confirmed that the player took the substance for medical reasons.
“Dr Munyonga then provided Fifa with the player’s doctor’s details. We are therefore waiting for Fifa on the verdict of the matter.
“Zifa has, therefore, not breached any rules. We adhered to Fifa’s request and Fifa is yet to communicate with us. The player is not banned as some quarters of the media would like the public to believe.
“We could not stop using the player because he has not been charged.”
On the issue of suspended players, both associations said they had not received any communication from the Confederation of African Football save for Zambia’s Kondwani Mtonga, who had accumulated three yellow cards.