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'They're on their own'

Published:Saturday | August 10, 2013 | 12:00 AM
Asafa Powell (left) and Sherone Simpson.-Ricardo Makyn/Staff Photographer

Francis vows to kick Powell, Simpson out MVP unless ...

Andre Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter

MOSCOW, Russia:MVP Track Club head coach and founder,Stephen Francis, has made it clear that embattled sprinters Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson have lost his trust and will not be allowed to return to the club, unless they sever all ties with agent Paul Doyle, 'among others'.

Long-time club members Powell and Simpson both tested positive for the banned stimulant Oxilofrine at the national championships in June.

Francis minced no words as he blamed the pair for what he described as a cloud of doubt around the club, while defending his own position on their role with the club.

cut off all communication

Francis also stated that he has cut off all communication with the athletes and made it clear that he will not be working with Doyle anymore.

"Well, now I have no contact with them because I told them that they have to promise and decide to do things our way, if I was going to have any further dealings with them, because they really embarrassed us, embarrassed me and they were warned," FrancistoldThe Gleaner.

Do it our way

"So far, they have not decided to do it our way so they are on their own and we can no longer trust them to do things the way we recommend, so that's the situation right now,"Francisadded.

"I have not heard anything from them and I assume that they are associated with the same people that caused all this, and as long as they associate themselves with those people - Paul Doyle among others - then I personally will not have any dealings with them as far as athletics is concerned."

"Every athlete is free, at any time, to leave MVP and I am also free to decide who I am going to coach. When something like this happens, there are very strong implications, even though it was an extremely trivial, frivolous and minor substance, it could have easily been something different," Francis added.

no choice

"So, as far as I am concerned, with Asafa and Sherone, that's the situation. If they are not prepared to do it my way, then I will no longer have any part with them," he added.

Francis insisted he had no choice but to take that position.

"Throw under the bus? They walked under the bus. We have enough rules set up in MVP to prevent this sort of thing form happening," saidFrancis. "I would be very stupid to continue.

"It's now the opinion of a lot of persons that MVP is now doing drugs, and their problems have caused a lot of problems for a lot of people. They were very selfish in their behaviour,"Francisstated.

Powell and Simpson are among five Jamaican track and field athletes who tested positive at the National Senior Championships. Both are expected to face a hearing in the coming week, after the results of their B samples are known.

Meanwhile, Tara Playfair, publicist for Asafa Powell, told The Gleaner the athlete would not comment on the matter.