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J. League apologizes to Ganaha

Kyodo News

J. League Chairman Kenji Onitake issued an apology Wednesday for the league’s penalties on Kazuki Ganaha a day after the Court of Arbitration for Sport said an intravenous vitamin infusion performed on him by Kawasaki Frontale’s team doctor was a legitimate medical treatment.

“We sincerely accept the ruling. We caused him hardship for a year. There are things we have to reflect upon,” Onitake said at a press conference in Tokyo.

The J. League will wipe a six-match suspension off the striker’s record from late April to mid-May 2007 and consider paying him for the suspension period.

But Onitake still argued that the court did not mention whether there was a doping violation.

“This could create problems for the future,” he said.

Meanwhile, Ganaha welcomed the CAS ruling at a press conference in the Kawasaki clubhouse.

“It was good that I persisted in my belief. I’m happy with the best result,” the 27-year-old said. “I want to do well on the pitch for the people who supported me in this process.”

In May last year, the J. League imposed the suspension on Ganaha and fined Kawasaki ¥10 million after he received a vitamin injection from the doctor the preceding month.

Ganaha claimed that the injection was conducted after he complained of a fever and diarrhea, and thus was a legitimate medical treatment.