Simona Halep's all-out defense may be futile

The situation remains very controversial: the modification of the sanction seems unlikely but the whole situation has too many inconsistencies

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Simona Halep's all-out defense may be futile
© Matthew Stockman / Staff Getty Images Sport

Important news has arrived in the last few hours on the doping issue relating to Simona Halep. As published by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), the 2-times Grand Slam champion asked for a reduction in the sanction, continuing to defend her innocence.

"The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS-CAS) has registered the appeal filed by the Romanian tennis player Simona Halep against the decision taken by the tribunal of the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) on September 22, in which the tennis player was found guilty of an anti-doping rule violation and sanctioned with a four-year period of ineligibility, starting from 7 October 2022, and with the disqualification of results obtained between 29 August 2022 and 7 October 2022, including the withdrawal of any medals , titles, points and cash prizes," reads the Swiss court statement.

According to the Lausanne court, Halep requests the annulment of the ITIA decision and the reduction of the fine. The Romanian tennis player's last appearance dates back to the first round of the US slam against the Ukrainian tennis player Daria Snihur, when Halep suffered an unexpected defeat 6-2 0-6 6-4.

Halep all-out defense proves how she firmly believes in her innocence. Clearly the situation remains very controversial: the modification of the sanction seems unlikely, even if there are too many inconsistencies about the whole situation.

Simona Halep's disqualification

Another chapter is added to the controversial issue of Simona Halep's doping disqualification. The former world number one was disqualified from the circuit for 4 years following the analysis of a sample of her urine, analyzed during the 2022 US Open, which tested positive for doping.

According to the International Tennis Integrity Agency, the Romanian tennis player had taken Roxadustat, a drug used in the treatment of anemia and illicit in the sports court, charges aggravated by the intake of a prohibited substance also in the merit of the program on the athlete's biological passport with 51 blood samples provided.

The court ruling in September 2023 therefore established Halep's guilt, sentencing her to a four-year ban which will end on 7 October 2026. The Romanian tennis player immediately denied the accusations, declaring herself innocent and unaware of the presence of the prohibited substance in food supplements taken.

Simona Halep