THE BLOG
12/08/2013 14:17 BST | Updated 11/10/2013 06:12 BST

Drugs in Sport: Testing for Athletes Must Be Strict

Early last Saturday week came a knock on my door from drug testers. Home visits from doping authorities can be frequent for any athlete. Like many, I have to declare a venue for one hour of each day of the week, and if they knock on the door I must be there to give a urine sample. If I am not where I said I would be at the given time, then that's a missed test. Three of those and it's a ban. There are random tests, too, in which testers can visit at any time.

Should it be this invasive? Should the testers have the power to knock on the door of the private home and demand a test? They've been drinking enough of my coffee of late too, perhaps I can make a claim.

After recent cheating, the world anti doping agency are justified in doing whatever they have to do. The fact is we are still not free from high profile cases of doping. The Lance Armstrong affair is still fresh, and has been some blow to the many who fell hook line and sinker for his miracle story. It did seem too good to be true at the time but we wanted to believe.

Now more 100m sprinters are at it, and how sad it is that recent coverage of the World Athletics Championships has been befouled with reports of doping scandals. What a pity for those who play fair to have to endure such doubt and contempt cast on their sport.

It is at times like this that I am happy to play a sport which involves a consequential skill element. No drug can make a squash player hit better shots.

This is why doping issues manifest themselves mostly in total physical sports such as cycling and athletics. Presently, the doubts and accusations are aimed at Chris Froome and Usain Bolt. Bolt's situation prompts the doubters, and considering his effervescent personality, outrageous brilliance and that he is the most iconic figure in sport, if he were to end up guilty the situation would become almost untenable. No one would have faith.

But we really must have faith and continue to enjoy the achievements of fair athletes. Perhaps the authorities should have all the space they need to eliminate all cheating in sport, even if they must encroach on the athlete's home. One day let's hope they will be too clever for the dopers, and we will have to worry about drugs no longer.

James' book, 'Shot and a Ghost' is available at willstrop.co.uk or on kindle