Bresnan 'absolutely devastated' over Elmir's doping ban

Bresnan 'absolutely devastated' over Elmir's doping ban

The ACT Greens are standing behind former staffer Bianca Elmir after a doping ban shattered the national boxing champion's Olympic Games dream.

The 30-year-old was stood down from the Australian team for this month's world championships in China after testing positive to two diuretics.

In a statement yesterday, the Australian Sport and Doping Agency said Elmir had tested positive to furosemide and amiloride at the national titles in Hobart in February, where she won the 51kg division.

Diuretics can be used as a masking agent for other drugs or for weight loss and are banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Ms Elmir told ASADA she took a tablet containing the substances because she suffered from swollen ankles after long flights.


Ms Elmir worked as an executive assistant to ACT Greens Member for Brindabella, Amanda Bresnan, from 2008-10, and also completed some part-time work earlier this year.

''She's a part of the green team and a part of our family,'' Ms Bresnan said.

''I was absolutely devastated when I heard the news.

''I'd seen how hard she has worked and I know hard she has worked. ''She has been extremely focused and dedicated in what she's doing. I can only imagine how she's feeling.''

Ms Elmir is understood to be in Thailand with friends and could not be contacted by The Canberra Times yesterday. The last post on her Facebook page is from May 8 - a day before her appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the provisional suspension.

The suspension was upheld last Thursday, with a date for a full CAS hearing to determine the length of the ban yet to be determined.

The last Australian athlete to test positive to furosemide was NSW bodybuilder Scott Matthews, who in 2009 received a two-year suspension.

Ms Bresnan described Ms Elmir as an ''incredibly dedicated and focused person'' who was very popular in the community.

''She made a lot of close connections with people who called into the office, that's the sort of person she is,'' Ms Bresnan said. ''She's one of the most dedicated and focused people I've met and the challenge to try and make the Olympic team is testament to her character.''

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