Van Gelder pulled from Dutch team for cocaine use

Amsterdam: Former world champion Yuri van Gelder was withdrawn from the Dutch world championship team this week for using cocaine, the country`s gymnastics union (KNGU) said on Wednesday.

Van Gelder, who won the world title on the rings in 2005, had returned to the sport only last month after a suspension of more than a year for cocaine use.

The KNGU said on Tuesday it had withdrawn the 27-year-old for personal medical reasons, but a statement on Wednesday said it was in the interest of the team and the sport to reveal the exact reason.

"Our agreement with him called for, among other things, that he refrains from using cocaine. Unfortunately, we have to note that Yuri relapsed in preparation for the World Cup," Jos Geukers, chairman of the Netherland`s gymnastics union, said in a statement on the KNGU website.

Van Gelder was considered to have a good chance of a medal at the world championships in Rotterdam, which start on Saturday.

Bureau Report

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