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Pound takes parting shot at sports governing bodies

LONDON, Nov 1 (Reuters) Outgoing World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) chief Dick Pound warned sport's governing bodies to toughen up in the fight on drugs cheats today.

''Doping is a 20th century problem being dealt with by 19th century organisations,'' Pound said today at a sport industry conference in London.

''It's a big, complicated problem and many of them don't have the stomach for the fight.'' Pound said there had been a ''sea change'' in the attitude to doping in the United States in the wake of the BALCO affair and said progress was being made worldwide.

''The science is a constant game of cat and mouse and that will continue,'' he said. ''But we are making progress. 75 per cent of our budget goes on scientific research.'' Pound, who leaves his post at the end of November, took a parting shot at cycling's world governing body (UCI) for its failure to get its house in order after another Tour de France blighted by doping.

''They let it get out of control,'' he said. ''Maybe they thought that the Tour de France was bigger than the sport.

''This year was a disaster and when television, written press and commercial backers start bailing out they must have known they were looking into the abyss.

''Letting doping into a sport is much easier than getting it out.

They are reaping what they sowed.'' REUTERS RJ BD2304

Story first published: Thursday, November 1, 2007, 23:34 [IST]
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