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6 players in tennis history caught doping

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Martina Hingis
Martina Hingis career was ruined by cocaine. Photo/Eurosport
  • Cases of tennis players caught doping is not new
  • Players are susceptible to using banned substances just like in many other competitive sports
  • Simona Halep tops this list

Even though everyone would like to think that tennis is a clean sport, cases of tennis players caught doping are not new.

Its players are susceptible to using banned substances just like in many other competitive sports such as athletics. While the cases are few compared to other disciplines, there are several players caught up in the web.

Who are they? Sportsleo brings you six of these players.

SIMONA HALEP

Simona Halep

Simona Halep. Photo by theScore.com

The Romanian starts off our list of tennis players caught doping. She was temporarily banned from tennis after testing positive for banned substances.

A sample was taken during the 2022 US Open, and she tested positive for Roxadustat, International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) says. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List for 2022 lists includes Roxadustat as a prohibited substance.

The two-time Grand Slam champion has denied intentionally using the drug. In a statement on her social media accounts, the 31-year-old player said this is hard on her.

The HIF-stabilizing agents drug class, to which Roxadustat belongs to, was coined by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

According to USADA, in order to boost the amount of oxygen delivered to working muscles and improve endurance performance, athletes utilise these products to raise their red blood cell count.

ANDRE AGASSI

Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi is a big wig in ATP Master Series. Photo/Tennis365

Legendary American tennis player Andre Agassi, is the first person in history to complete a Career Grand Slam. He is a former world No.1 one and eight-time Grand Slam winner.

Agassi waited until he was retired before he brought up his tumultuous history in his autobiography “Open.” Now married to another former champion, Steffi Graf, he revealed in the book that he had tested positive for the banned substance Crystal Methamphetamine back in 1997.

A support staff exposed him to the substance at a time when his form was deteriorating, and his marriage to actress Brooke Shields was breaking down.

MARIA SHARAPOVA

In 2016, Maria Sharapova failed a drug test at the Australian Open and tested positive for Meldonium. This drug is used for heart disease medication.

Sharapova defended her innocence, stating that a doctor had given her the medicine for 10 years. She said that she was unaware that WADA had added it to the list of banned substances, but she remains among tennis players caught doping.

The retired Russian player initially got a two-year ban. Some critics in Russia claimed that the American government was behind a political plot against her, but she appealed.

ITF reduced the ban to 15 months, citing that her staff was in charge of staying informed about banned substances.

RICHARD GASQUET

In a lengthy professional career, Richard Gasquet, is remembered as a former top-ten player with 15 ATP titles. The Frenchman, however, had to take a significant break from the sport in 2009.

He tested positive for cocaine at the Sony Ericsson Open in Florida. His suspension was lifted in July 2009 after an appeal. The appeals tribunal agreed with Gasquet’s argument that the drug entered his blood after he kissed a lady who had used cocaine in a nightclub.

Gasquet managed to overturn the 12-month provisional ban.

Martina Hingis. Photo/GiveMeSport

Martina Hingis. Photo/GiveMeSport

MARTINA HINGIS

 

Martina Hingis wouldn’t miss this list of tennis players caught doping. She graciously held the top spot for 209 weeks by the time she was 21. Then, she had seven Grand Slams, but injuries dogged her, and she made a comeback in 2005.

However, in 2007, Hingis failed a drug test at Wimbledon and tested positive for cocaine metabolite benzoylecgonine. She argued that she was innocent and that she had accidentally consumed it.

BARBORA STRYCOVA

The Czech tennis player had five months spent out of the sport between October 2012 and February 2013.This is after testing positive for the banned substance Sibutramine at the Luxembourg Open.

ITF later agreed that she had unintentionally consumed it while using Acai Berry Thin’s weight-loss supplement. WADA insisted that she is responsible for keeping watch of what goes to her body.

She won two senior singles competitions, but her biggest achievements have been in doubles. She also won the women’s double at Wimbledon in 2019 and has 29 additional WTA victories. She was a beaten finalist in Melbourne in January.

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, but an outgoing sports writer with focus on tennis, athletics, football, motorsports and NBA.

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