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Toth is given two-year doping ban

NEW YORK, (Reuters) -- American shot put champion Kevin Toth was banned for two years by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency on Tuesday after testing positive for an anabolic steroid.

Toth tested positive for tetrahydrogestrinone (THG) and the stimulant modafinil at the U.S. outdoor championships last June.

He again tested positive for THG during an out-of-competition test in July and for a third time at the IAAF 2003 world championships held in Paris in August.

All three positive tests are considered to be one doping offence, according IAAF rules.

The 36-year-old shot putter is suspended for two years from all sanctioned competition beginning on May 3, 2004.

All Toth's competitive results have been wiped from the record books from the date of his first positive test last June, including a first-place finish in the shot put at the 2003 national championships and fourth spot at the worlds.

Last week, American hammer throwers Melissa Price and John McEwen were banned for two years by USADA after testing positive for THG.

The suspensions are the first imposed on U.S. athletes for THG since the designer steroid was discovered last year.

Price, 24, tested positive at the U.S. national championships and in an out-of-competition test on July 29.

McEwen, 30, tested positive for THG and modafinil at the same championships and was suspended from April 19 this year.

Regina Jacobs, who also tested positive for THG at the U.S. championships, is still awaiting the results of her appeal.

The IAAF last Thursday stripped the British men's 4x100 meters relay team of their world championships silver medal after a positive test for THG by team member Dwain Chambers.

Chambers, the European 100 metres champion, tested positive on August 1 and received a two-year ban from national governing body UK Athletics in February.

Chambers, who denied ever knowingly taking the drug, chose not to appeal against the ban, prompting the IAAF to strip the British team of their relay medals.

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