Feb 13, 2013

Want drug-free athletes? Give women’s sport a go

The furore over drug use in (male) sports creates an opportunity for women -- ignored by the media and sponsors -- to win more attention. Crikey publisher and Netball Australia director Marina Go makes the case.

Shortly after Australia won the netball world championship in Singapore in 2011 I was discussing the win with one of the sport's biggest sponsors. He was thrilled by the win and explained to me how positive the decision to sponsor the sport had been for his career. As marketing manager of the fast-moving consumer goods brand, he had initiated the partnership to find a competitive cut-through for his brand.

Free Trial

You've hit members-only content.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions


Leave a comment

6 thoughts on “Want drug-free athletes? Give women’s sport a go

  1. Julie Briggs

    I agree with the premise that if people are looking for sport that is more likely to be clean, then they should given women’s sport a try.

    However, I can’t help but think that part of the reason women’s sport is relatively clean is because of the lack of corporate sponsorship, thereby avoiding the additional pressure that money brings and the culture of ‘win at any cost’ to secure more lucrative funds.

  2. Mike Smith

    @Julie: an interesting theory, that. Wouldn’t tennis be about the same for both genders?

  3. gapot

    Sounds like the writer in on some other planet. The tennis is full of women who should be in the mens comp.

  4. Ian Rogers

    Just to echo the comments on women’s tennis likely being no cleaner than men’s tennis. has some remarkable material.
    Also, a decade ago I spoke with a young woman who was one of Australia’s top junior players of her age but was obliged to abandon her tennis career because she would not take the advice to bulk up with steroids. (Actually, she was not so averse to the idea but her father said that no man would look at a woman with too many muscles…)

  5. Stephen

    Good point. The only team I watch in Canberra is W-League Canberra United, not the Brumbies.

    Then again, I hope somebody tested Nova Peris for sobriety, when she agreed to be the ‘captain’s pick’.

  6. Altakoi

    So basically, give elite non-professional sport a go because sponsorship creates money incentives for doping. A good idea, but not necessarily gender based.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details