South Africa batter Hamza given nine-month ban for doping

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South Africa batter Zubayr Hamza has been banned from all cricket-related activities for nine months by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for doping.

Hamza in March agreed a voluntary suspension after testing positive for banned substance Furosemide – which is not a performance-enhancing drug – in an out-of-competition sample on January 17.

The 26-year-old admitted the violation and, after establishing no significant fault or negligence on his part, the world governing body banned him until December 22.

Hamza's performances between January 17 and March 22 this year have been disqualified.

During that time, he scored 25 runs in the first innings and six in the second of the Proteas' innings-and-276 run defeat to New Zealand in the first Test in Christchurch.

He also made three appearances for Western Province, with a highest score of 30.

Alex Marshall, ICC general manager – integrity unit said: "The ICC is committed to keeping cricket clean and has a zero-tolerance approach to doping.

"It is also a timely reminder to all international cricketers that they remain responsible for anything they put into their bodies, to know exactly what medication they are taking so as to ensure it does not contain a prohibited substance and does not result in an anti-doping rule violation."

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