LONDON -- Some athletes caught using banned substances soon could face a four-year suspension for a first doping offense.
The World Anti-Doping Agency, which released the final draft of its latest World Anti-Doping Code on Monday, proposes increasing the ban from two years to four if there are "aggravating circumstances." The code still must be approved next month at a meeting in Madrid, Spain.
The new code also includes incentives to alert authorities to doping violations or to admit doping. A ban could be reduced by 75 percent for any athlete who assists officials in finding other drug cheats, and admitting to drug use before testing positive would cut a potential ban up to 50 percent.
Under the new rules, the use of substances whose performance-enhancing effects remain in the body for more than two years would qualify as an aggravating circumstance, WADA president Dick Pound said in an interview.
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The losses for Michelle Wie keep piling up even though her LPGA Tour season is over. The latest came Monday when her agent resigned after less than a year on the job. Greg Nared, a former Nike business manager whom the William Morris Agency hired a year ago to manage Wie, resigned as vice president of golf. His announcement came one day after Wie finished 19th in a 20-player field at the Samsung World Championship. "After careful consideration for my future, I have resigned effective immediately," Nared said in a statement e-mailed to The Associated Press. "I'm very grateful to the William Morris Agency for the opportunity to work with world-class athletes. It has been an invaluable experience and I'll forever cherish (it)."
Serena Williams has qualified for the season-ending WTA Championships (Nov. 6-11) in Madrid. Williams is the fifth player to qualify, along with Justine Henin, Jelena Jankovic, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Ana Ivanovic. The year-end championship ranking calculations are long and complicated at this point of the season because of the number of players still in the hunt, various injuries that can prevent them from gaining points, and the number of tournaments remaining.
New England forward Taylor Twellman and Chivas USA goalkeeper Brad Guzan were added to the U.S. roster for Wednesday's exhibition game at Switzerland. ... In MLS play, Stuart Holden scored in Houston's 1-0 win over host Real Salt Lake.