Doctor Mark Bonar and the Latest Sports Stars Doping Scandal

I woke up this morning to the headline ‘Footballers ‘doped’ by London doctor’, but there is an undercurrent to this story that seems to have been largely overlooked, if not totally ignored.

The doctor in question is one Mark Bonar, who has been the subject of a Sunday Times investigation.  I’ve had to use the BBC’s report as I don’t particularly want to pay a subscription for The Times and in any case what’s the point when their biggest stories get re-reported elsewhere?

Anyway, Bonar was secretly filmed claiming he’d prescribed performance-enhancing drugs to 150 athletes both in the UK and abroad over the past years.  These athletes include a number of Premier League footballers, an England cricket player and tennis players.

Sensational stuff indeed – providing it is the truth.

Within the article the BBC make a passing mention to the fact he is facing a misconduct tribunal later this month unrelated to this apparent doping scandal.

A link to the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service is provided outlining the details so I did a bit of further research (typed Mark Bonar into a search engine) and came across an article on that impending tribunal in The Mirror.

He is alleged to have hidden a patient’s terminal cancer so he could carry on charging her for treatments and to have informed her she was not eligible for NHS treatment as she was not a British citizen.  Bonar denies all 16 allegations of misconduct – but what if they are true?

Granted, the two cases are unrelated aside from the fact Bonar is at the centre of both. But if these allegations are proven to be correct that would paint Bonar as an untrustworthy individual. A man whose testimony could not be taken at face value, regardless of the fact he was seemingly secretly filmed.  If someone can lie to a woman dying of cancer about the severity of her disease he can probably lie to anyone, undercover journos included.  The Sunday Times make a good argument and there is almost certainly weight behind the story but by the same token they have probably jumped the gun by publishing now rather than wait until after his misconduct tribunal. Maybe a rival was also aware of the story so they felt they had to run it, who knows.

If this doping story is on the money make no mistake it is huge – but before we go witch hunting for any of his former sporting patients/clients perhaps it might be better to wait and see just what kind of man Bonar is then re-evaluate the situation from there. The tribunal is set for April 11-16, so it isn’t like we’ve got too long to wait.

Dr Mark Bonar Update 12/7/2016

I’ve been keeping an eye out to try and find the result of the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service hearing but Bonar’s keeps getting put back. Currently he is on their calendar from today until Thursday (July 14th 2016) but this has happened before. As soon as something happens I will update again.

Further Reading;

BBC article

Mirror article

Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service

UpdateThe Guardian have written something along similar lines to this, only fancier and with more research.

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Gonzo Sports Digest; the Week’s Weirdest

A week’s weirdest?  On a Wednesday?  Madness.  That’s just how we do things here at Gonzo towers.

Chris Gayle gets shot down, then stamped on, the fined

West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle clearly made a bit of an error asking Australian reporter Mel McLaughlin out live on TV, but the reaction afterwards has been something else.  Gayle’s been treated like some kind of sexual predator who should be kept away from women at all times.

He probably feels a bit embarrassed anyway, getting knocked back like that but to him I say don’t blush baby… then he’s been fined and there’s all this media scrutiny afterwards.  Call me crazy but I’d say that’s pretty rough, it’s not a Rolf Harris and Vanessa Feltz scenario after all.

There wasn’t quite this furore and outrage when interviewer Ian Cohen asked tennis player Eugenie Bouchard to “give us a twirl” at the Australian Open last year, personally I’d say an older guy making a young woman do something like that was infinitely worse than a man asking a woman of a similar age out for a drink but there you go.

Sadly, I can’t help but think that the fact Gayle is black has inflamed the situation further.  They’ve jumped on Gayle like a ravenous pack of dingoes on a defenceless baby platypus, albeit a seemingly/potentially misogynistic one. Then again who am I to accuse the Australian media, or indeed their wider society, of any inherent racism?  I mean, they treat their indigenous population fairly well don’t they? And there are no prison camps for migrants are there? Oh wait.

Mascot wars

That got a bit heavier than I’d expected, on a lighter note I came across a hilarious story in the Western Morning News regarding Torquay’s mascot.  Poor old Gilbert the Gull was banned from a televised game on New Year’s Day due to fears over his language.

All he wanted to do was “have a dance off” with Forest Green counterpart the Green Devil at half time too.

Even if he had been allowed in chances are he wouldn’t have got his wish anyway, as a Forest Green spokesman confirmed “The Green Devil don’t dance.”

Who would have thought a man who spends his Saturday afternoons dressed in a giant seagull costume could be a bit of an odd one eh?

Whiner of the week

The big baby award goes to no fun pundit Alan Shearer.  He took exception to The Times reporter Rory Smith’s tweet and felt the need to respond in true toys out the pram style:


Maybe that was a bit of a cheap dig, perhaps there’s some bad blood between the two I don’t know. Anyone with half a brain can see the point he’s essentially making is the return of a playing hero doesn’t always work out in management, Shearer just happens to be the example he’s chosen and for me it works.  No one really believes taking over that Newcastle side back then is truly comparable to becoming Real Madrid boss.  Smith is just adding a bit of flavour to his output for audience entertainment, something Shearer would do well to try with his grim punditry on Match of the Day #poorpunditry.

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