Armitage cleared of doping

Toulon flanker Steffon Armitage has been cleared of doping charges by a French Rugby Federation disciplinary panel.

The 27-year-old tested positive for morphine, a prohibited substance, following last season's Top 14 final defeat by Toulouse but he had always vehemently expressed his innocence.

Toulon insisted the result was caused by side-effects from medication Armitage had been prescribed for back pain, which the club said were approved by the French Anti-Doping Agency.

Armitage, who joined Toulon from London Irish last year, attended a two-hour hearing at the FFR's anti-doping commission in Marcoussis on 26 October.

And the FFR has now contacted Toulon's lawyer, confirming Armitage has been cleared of any anti-doping violation and that he will not be suspended.