Tuesday, January 17, 2012

More Of The Same? Drug Tests At The 2012 Aussie Open

From the Official website of the Australian Open: "As if losing in the opening round on a blazing hot day wasn’t bad enough, world No.65 Rebecca Marino was then requested to provide a routine anti-doping sample..."

Again, if the test distribution plan is on taking samples from losing players directly after matches (see 2009), there should be little surprise that there are so few positive tests for steroids, synthetic testosterone, EPO, stimulants, etc. You name it. They aren't going to find any.

At a minimum, the testing of match winners at random times on off-days is required.

5 comments:

  1. According to the AO website:

    http://www.australianopen.com/en_AU/news/articles/2012-01-18/201201171326809215541.html

    As if losing in the opening round on a blazing hot day wasn’t bad enough, world No.65 Rebecca Marino was then requested to provide a routine anti-doping sample. Unfortunately for the dehydrated Canuck, the sample took three hours to produce.

    Is three hours enough time for a significant amount of dope to wash out of someone's system?

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    Replies
    1. The point of this post was to show that they're testing the player that lost the match rather than the winner.

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    2. Are you implying that the loser was less likely to have used PEDS by mere virtue of the fact that they lost? Sorry, but I'm not sure if that is what you are arguing, Sen.

      I think you've missed another possible explanation: If a player tests positive they will receive an immediate provisional suspension, correct? What if the winner of a match tests positive for everything that's banned under the sun? Do you let him or her play another match? Of course you wouldn't but how do you issue a suspension without disclosing this to the public? Embarrassing, right?

      I think they are trying to avoid this scenario happening. It's called the "head-in-sand" sample selection technique. It's the "modern method" that the ITF has been referring to.

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    3. I agree that testing should be random, unpredictable and weighted toward high performers. The TADP actually supports these principles. See 5.1.3 2012 TADP:

      http://www.itftennis.com/antidoping/rules/index.asp

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    4. @michlob, No, I'm not suggesting that the loser is less likely to take PEDs. Winner and loser are equally likely. Also, I think your additional explanation for the test distribution is a valid one. It would be bad for a week 1 test to return a postive result in week 2 of a grand slam event, no?

      I did, however, misread demisphere's comment. To answer: given that any substances that a player takes will have to wash out through urine, I don't see waiting 3hrs as a way to test clean. Any substance would still be in the sample.

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