Olympics-Bahrain runner Alsadik Mikhou suspended for suspected blood doping

TOKYO, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Bahrain’s 1,500 metres runner Alsadik Mikhou has been provisionally suspended for receiving a blood transfusion during the Tokyo Olympics, the International Testing Agency said on Sunday.

The ITA, in charge of drugs testing during the Games, said the athlete had provided a sample a day before he raced in the 1,500 metres on Tuesday. He ran in the heats but failed to make it to the semi-finals.

The athlete can now request the testing of a ‘B’ sample, the ITA said.

Blood doping artificially boosts the blood’s ability to bring more oxygen to muscles thus improving performance.

Homologous blood transfusions, which Mikhou was provisionally found to have used, involve someone collecting and infusing the blood of a compatible donor. Autologous blood transfusions use a person’s own blood that has been stored. (Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Lincoln Feast.)