Fremantle Dockers star Ryan Crowley has received a 12-month ban by the AFL anti-doping tribunal after testing positive to a banned substance last year.
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Crowley will be eligible to play from September 24 having already served eight months of his provisional ban.
It means the tagger could make a sensational return for the Dockers should Ross Lyon’s side reach the preliminary finals this season.
A remorseful Crowley apologised for letting the club and his teammates down.
“I am deeply remorseful and disappointed with the mistake that I made last year,” Crowley said in a statement.
“I genuinely never intentionally meant to do the wrong thing.
“In the 13 years I have been playing for Fremantle I have never wanted to jeopardise my career and position at the club, or let any of my team mates or fans down. And for that I hope you will accept my deepest and sincerest apology.”
Crowley failed a matchday test after Fremantle’s round 17 clash with the Greater Western Sydney Giants last season for a substance contained in a painkiller that was not prescribed by the club.
The 31-year-old has played 188 games for the club since he was drafted in 2002, but falls out of contract at the end of the season.
Fremantle says it will not make a decision on Crowley’s playing future until the end of the season.