Warriors NRL doctor warns of 'cocktailing'
John Mayhew, the doctor for New Zealand's NRL side the Warriors, told ABC TV's 7.30 on Tuesday night that having spoken with players and other club medicos, "cocktailing" is widespread.
"Basically they get a high and it doesn't contravene any of the existing drug testing protocols," Dr Mayhew told 7.30. "Widespread is the word I'd use."
Mayhew also believes the problem exists in other football codes.
His comments came just before the NRL announced on Wednesday they would start testing for prescription drugs, including the controversial sleeping pill Stilnox.
The NRL's chief operating officer, Jim Doyle, concedes there's anecdotal evidence that prescription drugs are being abused by players but no sanctions will be imposed in 2014 for those that test positive.
The NRL reached agreement with the Rugby League Players Association to test players for two classes of prescription drugs: