Simona Halep's ordeal should have been avoided, she didn't deserve it

Regardless of how this story ends, the doping ban duo was handled very badly, leading the former No.1 to suffer from panic attacks

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Simona Halep's ordeal should have been avoided, she didn't deserve it
© Julian Finney / Staff Getty Images Sport

Simona Halep tested positive for roxadustat, a banned substance that would have altered her performance, following a doping test disclosed at the 2022 US Open. The Romanian was later found guilty of irregularities in her biological passport, bringing her charges to two.

The 32-year-old allegedly violated rules of the Tennis Anti-Doping Program (TADP) and, in September 2023, the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) ruled that she would serve a four-year suspension for doping. However, and it was news a few days ago, Simona will present her defense to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in February 2024, to safeguard her innocence from doping accusations.

The Swiss organization announced on its official website on December 12 that the 32-year-old's case will be heard in court between February 7 and 9 next year.

Simona Halep didn't deserve it

This was the beginning of her ordeal, which led her to suffer much psychological suffering.

Regardless of how the story ends, regardless of who is right, Simona did not deserve this psychological and media treatment. The situation needed to be resolved more quickly and clearly. Now, following what happened, the Romanian is also suffering from anxiety crises. "I went through periods where I couldn't sleep and had anxiety attacks.

I'm known for being a very emotional player. Before matches, stress gave me severe abdominal pain. Since I was suspended, it's like I've been living with that pain and anxiety every day, even though things are a little better now.

Talking to someone is always good, it helps you to vent, release some tension and learn to accept, even if in my case it's difficult because I'm the victim of an injustice. I know that I have done nothing wrong and that I have nothing to blame myself for.

Seeing things this way helps me fight insomnia," she said. Halep, however, has no intention of giving up and she remains confident, keeping hope alive for her return to thecourt: "I am innocent and I still have faith. I believe in justice and I have no intention of giving up."

Simona Halep