By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
Gilas Pilipinas’ historic gold medal achievement in the recently concluded Asian Games suddenly turned into jeopardy after naturalized superstar Justin Brownlee failed his drug test announced last October 12, 2023.
The International Testing Agency (ITA) revealed the shocking update and explained that Brownlee tested positive for Carboxy-THC.
Carboxy-THC is the main secondary metabolite of tetrahydrocannabinol, a drug that is often linked to cannabis.
The drug is widely prohibited in any professional sports tournament including the Asian Games which conducts strict testing to maintain the level of fairness in the competition.
According to the ITA, Brownlee’s samples were collected last October 7, 2023, during an in-competition anti-doping control.
It was headed by the China Anti-Doping Agency and will be later relayed to the Anti-Doping Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport for adjudication under the OCA Anti-Doping rules.
The ITA added that Brownlee was already informed about their final findings and will have the right to request the analysis of the B-samples.
Brownlee had one of the best runs in the history of the Asian Games men’s basketball after helping Gilas pull off a stunning come-from-behind victory over China to secure their gold medal duel against Jordan.
Down by seven points with only 1:36 remaining in the crucial semifinal game, Brownlee went beast mode and unloaded eight straight points in 67 seconds to dispatch China, 77-76.
Brownlee finished his legendary game with 33 points with 17 of those all coming in the fourth quarter, leaving the pro-Chinese crowd in shock as they walked out with the victory.
After carrying Gilas against the home bets, Brownlee had an all-around efficient game against Jordan on their way to their arduous gold medal finish after 61 years of drought.