Simona Halep judges herself innocent, but all dope addicts said it

The ruling was clear once it arrived. What coul happen now?

by Lorenzo Ciotti
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Simona Halep judges herself innocent, but all dope addicts said it
© Julian Finney / Staff Getty Images Sport

Last September 12, the International Tennis Integrity Agency announced that Simona Halep will have to serve a four-year ban for doping. The disqualifies, counting the day the Romanian was suspended for the first time, will last from October 7, 2022 to October 6, 2026.

There are two violations punished by the TADP. The first concerns the positivity to Roxadustat, a substance prohibited by the regulation, found at the end of her journey at the 2022 US Open. The second, however, is based on an irregularity present in the athlete's biological passport.

The situation, as we have highlighted several times, is truly grotesque. Especially for the long times that Romanian had to wait before the verdict. The bureaucracy kept the very strong Simona out for a year, before knowing what her fate was.

It's not fair that she had to go through this.

However, the ruling was clear once it arrived. Halep is guilty, Halep is a dope addict, Halep declares herself innocent, as (almost) all dope addicts have done. A script, this one, already seen a lot of times.

And that said, we don't say Halep is guilty. As long as she can lodge an appeal, the matter remains unclear. Simona may be innocent or guilty, but what is happening is what always happens when an athlete is stopped for doping.

If she protested the sentence so vehemently, she will have her reasons to do so. So, that being said, until there is a final verdict, so after Halep's appeal, no one can say that she is guilty. Not even the colleagues who attacked her with more or less vague phrases.

Simona's words

Halep spoke again after the disqualification, also responding to her colleagues who criticized her.

She explained to Front Office Sports: "I was confident after the hearing, because there were so many things that didn't make sense.

When I was told their decision, I was completely annoyed. I couldn't believe they suspended me for four years. They found nothing wrong with my blood tests. It's crazy that they made this decision despite all the evidence my legal team shows.

They have no proof." Halep retraced the steps that led to the hearing and revealed that she initially did not know the origin of the source containing Roxadustat.

She said: “Mentally it was a disaster to discover positivity.

I have always been careful about what I put in my body and have never taken something without checking. There was no reason for me to take it: it would have worked against me. It's a substance that can help me."

Halep finally explained that she will try to stay in shape hoping that her legal team will be able to obtain results in court: "It's difficult to concentrate on tennis.

I need to stay healthy. It's exciting to be on the tennis court, but when you're emotionally down you can hurt yourself physically. I'm trying to protect myself, so I will continue to go to the gym to keep fit.

Negative comments from my colleagues? I think everyone has the right to judge me because the court has decided that I am guilty. Someone told me that some tennis players make hateful comments because I beat them."

Simona Halep
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