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England flanker cleared of doping violation

CLEARED: Armitaged

TOULAN AND England rugby union player Steffon Armitage has been cleared of taking performance enhancing drugs by a French Rugby Federation (FFR) disciplinary panel.

The 27-year-old flanker, who plays in France for Top 14 club Toulon, tested positive for prohibited substance morphine in June and was provisionally suspended from playing.

Armitage, who has been capped five times by England, maintained his innocence and Toulon stated that the positive test occurred due to the forward using treatment for a back injury that had been approved by the French anti-doping Agency.

A hearing took place on October 26 and the FFR confirmed to Toulon that Armitage was cleared to compete.

Since swapping former club London Irish for Toulon in 2011, the Trinidad and Tobago born Armitage has received several plaudits for his performances and was named Top 14's Player of the Season by French newspaper Midi Olimpique.

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