The 25-year-old marathon champion Purity Komen has chosen to retire from professional sports after receiving a six-year suspension from the sports Integrity Unit (AIU). This is a stunning turn of events. The prohibition, which goes into effect on July 6, 2023, was put in place as a result of Komen’s infractions, which included avoiding sample collection and possessing a prohibited substance (norandrosterone).

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Komen, well-known for her victory over Ruth Chepng’etich in the 2023 Istanbul Half Marathon, faced the repercussions despite her attempts to sidestep the consequences. Norandrosterone, classified as a Prohibited Substance under the WADA 2022 Prohibited List (category S1.1 Anabolic Androgenic Steroids), triggered the strict sanctions, prohibiting its use at all times.

On May 12, 2023, Doping Control and Blood Collection Officers arrived in Iten for an out-of-competition test on Komen, who was notably absent. After providing misleading information to the officers and subsequently turning off her phone, Komen later contacted the AIU, seeking a 14-day extension due to a prolonged back injury that required accurate medication details.


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Despite being granted an extension until July 24, Komen failed to furnish any explanation for the Adverse Analytical Finding. Additional extensions, including one until November 20, were granted, but Komen ultimately admitted her error via WhatsApp, expressing her decision to step away from her running career.

Following this admission, Komen did not provide any further responses and neglected to return the signed anti-doping rule violations acceptance form by the deadline of February 28, 2024. The AIU’s stringent enforcement of anti-doping regulations underscores its dedication to upholding the integrity of athletics across all levels.