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The AFL confirmed the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) notified the league that the two players had tested positive in an ‘A’ sample for clenbuterol.
Both Thomas and Keeffe are now provisionally suspended with their ‘B’ samples set to be tested on April 14.
An AFL statement said Thomas and Keeffe provided the samples on February 10, before ASADA informed league and the players of the positive result last Friday.
Buckley said both himself and the two players were in shock over the recent events.
“I am shocked that there is this substance in their systems, full stop,” Buckley said was quoted as saying by Fairfax Media.
“They were shocked.”
Buckley did not rule out the possibility of both Thomas and Keeffe not playing for the Magpies ever again.
“That’s the stark reality Josh and Lachie find themselves in. Really, that is ASADA’s opinion,” he said.
“That’s the way that has happened. Ignorance is no excuse. There is still plenty of information we need to understand to get to the bottom of that.”
It’s been week from hell for the Magpies, with new recruit Jack Crisp yesterday fined $5000 after bets were placed from his account on the AFL market last year while playing for the Brisbane Lions.
He escaped a ban after cooperating with AFL investigations.