AFL chief executive Gill McLachlan address the media.
AFL chief executive Gill McLachlan address the media. JULIAN SMITH

Eagles' 2006 title 'not tainted', says AFL boss

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has rubbished suggestions West Coast's 2006 premiership is tainted, despite illicit drug revelations.

Responding to the Herald Sun's revealing report into the extent of the Eagles' drug culture, McLachlan confirmed there was no evidence suggesting the Eagles took performance-enhancing drugs.

The Eagles defeated the Swans to claim the 2006 flag and Sydney great Barry Hall said the win was tarnished, but when asked whether he thought that was the case, McLachlan said: "No I don't."

Former ASADA boss Richard Ings, who was in charge in 2006, revealed this week Eagles and Swans players were drug tested after the grand final but no player returned a positive result.

McLachlan confirmed that was the case.

"There has never been any allegation or any evidence of anything related to performance-enhancing drugs," he said.

"The players were tested and Ben Cousins was target tested on match-day and they never tested positive to any form of drug."

The AFL has been criticised for not taking action against the Eagles following the release of the report, despite the damning evidence.

But McLachlan defended the league.

"The recommendation of the Gillard report to the (AFL) Commission was there was not enough evidence to charge the club with conduct unbecoming," he told 3AW.

"That was the conclusion and the recommendation by the independent judge."

McLachlan rejected any claims Ben Cousins's Brownlow Medal win in 2005 is tarnished despite what we know about the fallen star's addiction.

"No, I don't (think it's tainted). I understand the theory but he was target tested, he was heavily scrutinised," he said.

"The facts are the club was target tested, he was target tested and he never failed a test. After that there is a lot of speculation in that."

News Corp Australia

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