After months of pondering, arguing and anxious waiting, West Indies cricketer Andre Russell will know whether he will face time on the sidelines over allegations he violated an anti-doping whereabouts clause.
In March 2016, Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) alleged that Russell failed to file his whereabouts, resulting in him missing three doping tests over a 12-month period between March and September 2015. Under World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) regulations, that equates to a failed test.
The verdict is to be handed down today at the Jamaica Conference Centre, and he faces the possibility of suspension up to two years if found guilty.
The independent disciplinary panel convening the hearing comprises chairman Hugh Faulkner, Dr Marjorie Vassell and former national cricketer Dixeth Palmer.
JADCO, represented by attorney Lackston Robinson, has accused Russell of failing to file his whereabouts on three occasions during the 12-month period.
Russell’s lawyers, including Queen’s Counsel Patrick Foster and Donovan Walker, have maintained that the respondent was not negligent.
Russell, 28, said he has faith in his legal team and is banking on the power of prayer of those close to him as he prepares for the verdict.
The case has been running from September 2016 with a few hiccups along the way.
On October 7, a no-show by panellist Dr Marjorie Vassell stalled the disciplinary hearing. It was adjourned without any witness testimony.
The following day, a debate over the use of mobile technology while in session hogged much of the spotlight.
Today, the spotlight will be on Russell.