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Two-Time Grand Slam Champion Banned For Four Years

Two-Time Grand Slam Champion Banned For Four Years

Romanian tennis star and two-time Grand Slam winner Simona Halep has been suspended for four years following breaches of tennis’ anti-doping programme.

In a statement put out on Tuesday by the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) as reported by Sky Sports, Halep has been banned for two separate anti-doping rule violations.

“The first (charge) related to an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for the prohibited substance roxadustat at the U.S. Open in 2022, carried out through regular urine testing during competition.

“The tribunal accepted Halep’s argument that they had taken a contaminated supplement, but determined the volume the player ingested could not have resulted in the concentration of roxadustat found in the positive sample.

“The second charge related to irregularities in Halep’s Athlete Biological Passport (ABP).”

It said the ABP charge was also upheld as three independent experts were unanimous that “likely doping” was the explanation for the irregularities in Halep’s profile. The case remains subject to appeal.

Halep has strongly denied knowingly taking the banned substance.

she argued that she had evidence to show that small amounts of the anaemia drug entered her system from a licensed supplement that was contaminated.

The 31-year-old former Wimbledon and French Open champion has been provisionally suspended since October 2022 after testing positive for banned blood-booster roxadustat at the US Open last year.

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Back in October, Halep said the positive drugs test she returned was “the biggest shock of her life,” and vowed to clear her name.

Roxadustat has been linked to doping in the past, with the United States Anti-Doping Agency retesting samples in 2016 after saying it had been tipped off about the anaemia drug’s use by athletes.

The banned substance increases the production of red blood cells, helping endurance, and is in the same category of banned substances as EPO.

Halep turned professional in 2006, making her WTA main draw debut in 2010 at the Andalucia Tennis Experience.

She reached her first Grand Slam final in 2014, when she lost at the French Open to Sharapova.

After also losing finals at Roland Garros (2017) and the Australian Open (2018), Halep finally won her first major when she beat Sloane Stephens at the 2018 French Open.

She then went on to defeat Serena Williams to claim a maiden Wimbledon title in 2019.

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  • pompei 9 months ago

    This doping thing. Athletes should do everything to remain compliant with anti-doping regulations. Their reputation and big money is on the line!
    Double and triple check before you take any supplements.

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