European women’s discus champion Sandra Perkovic fought back the tears this week at her first press conference since failing a dope test last month.
The 21-year-old Croatian admitted she had been careless about the supplements she had taken but rejected suggestions that she was a drugs cheat.
“I am totally opposed to doping and what is happening to me now is the worst possible thing I could have imagined. I never expected this…this was not intentional. This season is over for me but I will be back stronger than before. I hope I will be able to compete at the Olympics.”
Perkovic had tested positive for methylhexanamine, a psychostimulant after last month’s Rome and Shanghai Diamond League meetings.
The athlete said she took the supplements to cure a back pain.
If found guilty by the sports governing body the IAAF and banned for more than a six-month period she will automatically be disqualified from next year’s Olympic Games in London.