Simona Halep opens up on experiencing anxiety attacks after doping suspension

Halep has been suspended since 2022 October.

by Dzevad Mesic
Simona Halep opens up on experiencing anxiety attacks after doping suspension
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep admits she has been battling "pain and anxiety" since her doping suspension and experiencing anxiety attacks. In 2022 October, the ITIA provisionally suspended Halep after the Romanian tested positive for banned substance Roxadustat.

In 2023 May, the ITIA announced that Halep was hit with a second anti-doping charge over irregularities in her biological passport. After this year's US Open, Halep got a four-year doping ban from tennis. Throughout the entire process, Halep maintained her innocence.

"I went through periods where I couldn't sleep, where I had anxiety attacks. I am known to be a very emotional player. Before matches, stress caused me very severe abdominal pain. Since I received [my doping] suspension, it’s as if I live every day with this pain and anxiety.

Although today things are a little better. We are still in touch, and [my psychologist] helps me stay calm and manage my anxieties. Generally speaking, talking to someone is always a good thing. It allows you to vent, to relieve yourself a little, to learn to accept, even if, in my case, it is difficult, because I am the victim of an injustice.

On the other hand, I know that I have done nothing wrong and that I have nothing to reproach myself for. Seeing things this way helps me fight insomnia," Halep told Paris Match.

Halep will be heard between February 07-09

Recently, coach Patrick Mouratoglou publicly revealed that he was the one who provided Halep with collagen that was contaminated with a banned substance.

In his message, coach Mouratoglou insisted that he wasn't aware that the product was contaminated with a banned substance. After receiving a four-year doping ban, Halep appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). This month, the CAS revealed that Halep's case will be heard between February 07-09. For Halep, this is her last hope of clearing her name and returning to tennis earlier than 2026.

Simona Halep