Piacentini banned

Piacentini banned for taking coke
By Reuters

04/02/2008 at 17:19Updated

Former Italian table tennis number one Valentino Piacentini has been banned for 20 months for testing positive for cocaine.

Piacentini, 29, failed a drugs test during last June's Italian Championships, which he won, although the title was subsequently revoked.

CONI, which acts as the country's anti-doping body, said on its website that the start of the ban would be backdated to July 12, when Piacentini was suspended for the positive test.

CONI is on a crusade to clean up Italian sport with athletes from golfers to volleyball players and cyclists recently being brought in for doping hearings.