Reilly Opelka is calling for a full ban on Adderall use in professional tennis. In 2022 November, 39-year-old Fernando Verdasco failed a doping test and was handed a two-month ban after failing to renew his Therapeutic Use Exemption for Adderall.
At the time, Opelka strongly reacted and suggested that players were abusing that rule so they could have access to "legal doping." Nearly a year later, one person asked Opelka on Instagram: "If you could change one thing about tennis, besides getting rid of doubles what would it be?" Opelka answered: "Ban Adderall." Opelka then received a follow-up question that read: "People suffer from ADHD, why would you say ban Adderall?" Opelka responded: "My comment applies to professional tennis in particular.
But some players have a hard time building strength.. should they be allowed to take steroids?"
Opelka thinks it's time for tennis to ban Adderall use
Adderall is a medication used for treating ADHD (Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder).
Adderall helps improve focus and concentration. With that being said, some believe a tennis player that uses the medication has the advantage in that aspect over his opponent. "One of the biggest issues in tennis.. why are guys taking Adderall for the first time in their life as adults? Legal doping," Opelka wrote following the Verdasco news in late 2022.
One person reacted to Opelka's comment by saying: "It’s not his first time he has used it… it literally says he forgot to renew it." But Opelka didn't backtrack a second on his previous remark, responding: "Sorry but I dont have empathy for any tennis player testing positive for Adderall, as in my mind it's a PED." At the time, Opelka wasn't the only tennis player who publicly criticized use of Adderall in tennis as some other players also suggested that there may be players abusing the rule and using the medication just to have a stronger focus on the court.
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