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Ysaora Thibus, top France fencer, denies doping after provisional suspension

Ysaora Thibus

France’s Ysaora Thibus reacts during the match against Italy’s Martina Batini in the women’s foil team semifinal bout during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Makuhari Messe Hall in Chiba City, Chiba Prefecture, Japan, on July 29, 2021. (Photo by Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP) (Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images)

AFP via Getty Images

Ysaora Thibus, a world champion fencer from France, has been provisionally suspended after testing positive for a banned substance from a Jan. 14 sample.

Thibus, 31, tested positive for ostarine, which is listed as a banned anabolic agent by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

“I deny with the greatest firmness having administered any doping substance to myself,” was posted on Thibus’ social media Friday, according to a translation from French. “The negative results of the dozens of checks undergone this year, like all the others, bear witness to this. Also, 169 days before the Olympic Games in Paris which constitute the dream of my life as a woman and athlete, everyone will understand that this information initially created an effect of astonishment in me and all those who ensure my preparation. After this first touch, I begin an assault which aims to prove my innocence today to allow me to shoot tomorrow in what will be the most beautiful tournament of my career.”

Thibus can request her B sample be tested.

The provisional suspension can be lifted if Thibus proves to an International Fencing Federation disciplinary tribunal that the violation is likely to have involved a contaminated product.

Thibus was part of France’s silver medal-winning women’s foil team at the Tokyo Games, her third Olympics.

She won the individual foil world title in 2022 and lost in the round of 16 at last year’s worlds.