LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- The Court of Arbitration for Sport has cut Algeria player Youcef Belaili's four-year ban to two after testing positive for cocaine at an African Champions League game.
CAS says its panel annulled the Confederation of African Football's verdict for denying Belaili his legal rights to appeal.
The panel judged the player's case afresh and imposed a two-year ban, ruling he was at fault for smoking a shisha pipe ahead of a game.
Belaili acknowledged smoking the pipe at a party on Aug. 5, 2015, but stopped when a friend told him cocaine was mixed with the tobacco.
The USM Algers forward was chosen at random for a doping sample after a Champions League game on Aug. 7.
CAS says the 24-year-old Belaili will be banned through Sept. 19, 2017.