Rugby-Carter, team mates get final doping clearance in France

PARIS, April 4 (Reuters) - Former All Blacks flyhalf Dan Carter has expressed his relief at being cleared again after another hearing into a failed doping test following the French Top 14 final last June. Carter, fellow former All Blacks player Joe Rokocoko and Argentina international Juan Imhoff all returned positive samples for corticoids, which are typically used to treat inflammation or joint pain. Their club Racing 92 and the players denied any wrongdoing and said they had been granted Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs) for the prescribed medication as they recovered from injuries. The French Rugby Union (FFR) cleared the players of any wrongdoing last October but France's anti-doping agency (AFLD) in January ordered them to appear before another hearing. Racing said the players had been cleared. "It's been a frustrating process but satisfying to finally get the final clearance from the AFLD," Carter wrote on social media. "It has been difficult having my integrity questioned so thank you for all the support." The club added they were also pleased the matter had now appeared to be put to bed. "We welcome the decision of the French Anti-Doping Agency, which without doubt has cleared Dan Carter, Juan Imhoff and Joe Rokocoko in what the media called 'the case of corticosteroids'" the club said in a statement on their website. "All this pseudo-business has cast the shame on our players and our club by spoiling our early season. "For our part, we will simply reiterate... our total confidence in our players and in Sylvain Blanchard, the doctor of Racing 92." (Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by John O'Brien)