Drugs in sport: Call to take closer look at NZ sport

The head of the World Anti-Doping Authority believes New Zealand sports bodies have to take a closer look at their operations in the wake of the Australian Crime Commission's findings.

Australian sport finds itself in an unprecedented maelstrom after authorities this week released their report blowing the lid on the widespread drug use in their major sporting codes and the involvement of organised crime.

The shockwaves will reverberate for months as criminal investigations are launched into various sports, teams and individuals. The Commission has been criticised in some quarters - most notably by league identity Phil Gould - for the lack of detail in the report, but it is inevitable there will be a fund of names and teams that will be drip-fed to the public in the coming weeks.

Although New Zealand's professional sporting franchises and organisations have rushed to distance themselves from the Australian controversy, Wada director general David Howman said it would be naive to assume the same could not happen in New Zealand.

''I think the attitude will change as a result of this, I don't think there'll be too much of a laissez faire sort of approach, or the attitude that we're the good guys and everyone else is bad. And I hope New Zealand has the same sort of outlook and checks that there is nothing like this going on in New Zealand.

''What you've got [in Australia] is an entrenched underworld working away into professional sports. Could that happen in New Zealand? I don't know, but I think it needs to be checked to see if it's going on or not.''

NZRU medical director Ian Murphy, believes New Zealand's biggest sports are on top of the problem, ''but we never take it for granted''.

There is little doubt that our professional sports operate on the cutting edge of sports science, but Murphy said the NZRU do not approach the line, let alone cut it in terms of legality.

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