Wales Rugby League and the Rugby Football League complies with the UK Anti-Doping Rules and principles of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). We also comply with all International Rugby League guidelines and ‘Clean Game’ the IRL independent anti-doping partner.
Wales Rugby League are committed to a sport free of doping and the principles of the World Anti- Doping Code. This includes the mandatory articles of the Code and all relevant International Standards. Therefore, all WRL directors, officials, representatives, coaches, match officials and players are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that is appropriate for the National Governing Body of Rugby League with anti-doping rules. Failure to observe the anti-doping rules shall result in a disciplinary procedure and sanctions.
We want to ensure that all Rugby League players and coaches in Wales can make well informed and positive decisions so they players can say with pride “That was one hundred per cent me”.
In 2019, on the appointment of Gareth Kear as Chief Executive Officer, Wales Rugby League entered a new sage of its development in several operational areas. One of these key areas was anti-doping advice and Education which has been delivered by Gareth Kear and WRL Wheelchair Head coach Stephen Jones, who are both UKAD accredited advisors.
Over the next four years, working towards Rugby League World Cup 2025, the Wales Rugby League anti-doping strategy is to build on the last two years and in accordance with the UKAD 2021 code is to move education from anti-doping control to Clean Sport education for all players, coaches, volunteers, administrators and crucially parents of age grade pathways. WRL will provide access to support and information to allow everyone to make informed decisions, and guide others towards upholding Rugby League as a clean sport.
Wales Rugby League is responsible for clean sport in the community, elite and international game in Wales. Wales Rugby League, however, through a close relationship with the Rugby Football League (RFL) European Rugby League (ERL) international Rugby League (IRL) and our close neighbours the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU), work collaboratively to support the wider rugby community.
Wales Rugby League is committed to promoting clean sport, supporting a doping-free environment, and safeguarding the health of all players. Rugby League encompasses a range of disciplines including those for which clean sport knowledge is more widely understood, and disciplines, such as Masters, Students and Disability Rugby League, for which a better awareness is needed.
The fastest growing element of Rugby League participation in Wales is with younger age groups of girls and boys, therefore, to better support our younger players it is mandatory for all parents/guardians to also attend anti-doping education. It is widely accepted that the youth demographic in sport necessitate ongoing support particularly in relation to substances of abuse and performance and image enhancing drugs.
Wales Rugby League acknowledge the sporting landscape is continually changing, and therefore we need to ensure our approach to clean sport reflects developing trends in doping and supplement use in the UK. Through ongoing collaboration with key stakeholders, we will ensure our approach to a Clean Sport Education Programme evolves to addresses the needs of athletes and athlete support personnel across the various Rugby League disciplines.
Mission and Objectives
Wales Rugby League are committed to seeking continuous improvement and ensuring Clean Sport guidance and support is provided to the highest standards of trust and integrity. To date, Wales Rugby League’s Anti-Doping Sport Strategy has centred on improving access and awareness to Anti-doping Education across all elite and international levels and disciplines. In accordance with the Code 2021, Wales Rugby League will support the principle that any athlete’s first experience with anti-doping should be Clean Sport Education rather than Doping Control. In this context Wales Rugby League will work with UK Anti-Doping to identity new and effective ways to reach all individuals who need to be aware of and understand their clean sport rights and responsibilities.
Wales Rugby League Strategy 2021-202
The operational leads for this Strategy will be Gareth Kear and Stephen Jones with the WRL Board lead Marc Lovering.
Wales Rugby League will focus on the following priorities:
Review and maintain current anti-doping rules, policies and guidance. Wales Rugby League are committed to meeting the highest standards as set out by UK Anti-Doping’s Assurance Framework.
Education and Communication
Deliver Clean Sport education and information, tailored and accessible to a range of Rugby League groups. Wales Rugby League will oversee implementation of its Clean Sport Education Plan. Update the WRL website to enable all participants to easily find up to date information on Clean Sport and Anti-Doping including links to additional resources and the 100%Me App. Reach out to other NGBs to collaborate on intelligence. WRL will provide a confidential ‘whistle blower’ contact to obtain, assess, and process anti-doping intelligence from all available sources for UKAD Target Testing.
Support a Clean Sport Network of advisors
Through this network we can further our reach in the wider Rugby League community.
Monitoring and Evaluation
Wales Rugby League will report annually to the WRL Board and UK Anti-Doping to reflect on the success and areas for improvement in the Clean Sport Education Plan.
Gareth Kear Chief Executive Officer October 2021
This police can be found on the WRL website here.