DOPING in sport is a worldwide problem and not restricted to China, says Hong Kong Sports Institute director Dr Dennis Whitby, who spent several years coaching in the mainland. Despite positive drug tests on 11 Chinese Asian Games athletes, Whitby said the world should not be too quick to condemn China. Instead, it should realise that doping casts a shadow throughout the whole of the sporting world. 'Doping is not a China problem, it is something that is happening everywhere in the world,' said Whitby, who coached the Chinese national track and field team in the early eighties. 'It is difficult to say how widespread it is, but when I was coaching in the United States in the late 70s, substances were found on our athletes. 'This was wherever I coached in the US. They were following up from the Europeans.' He said Australia and Canada appear to have led the rest of the world in doping control because of their superior domestic anti-drug programmes. China recently signed a deal with Australia in the fight against drugs. Of the 11 athletes who tested positive, seven were identified by a Japanese newspaper as swimmers. There were also two canoeists, one cyclist and a hurdler. Whitby said he did not think China's track and field athletes were taking substances during his coaching stint on the mainland. 'I was not aware of anything that was going on there,' said Whitby. 'In the early eighties China was fairly backward in track and field.' International track and field is believed to be flooded with doping, even after Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson was discovered as a cheat at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul. Britain has also come under the doping microscope following positive tests of several of their athletes at this year's Commonwealth Games in Victoria.