Taking a close look at doping control in professional tennis. How stringent is it? We also look at other issues related to the integrity of the sport.
Venus Williams releases a statement in response to today's hack of WADA which leaked her (+Serena's) TUE records: pic.twitter.com/z2RAVNt6fM— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) September 13, 2016
Venus Williams releases a statement in response to today's hack of WADA which leaked her (+Serena's) TUE records: pic.twitter.com/z2RAVNt6fM
One of Simone Biles' TUEs is highly suspicious. She was granted a TUE for dexmethlyphenedate on 22-Okt-2014 and it was backdated all the way to 06-Dec-2013. I wonder how many positive doping tests she's had during this timeframe that were brushed under the carpet by the authorities.
The back dating of a TUE was a huge issue in the Lance Armstrong matter so it will be interesting to see how and if it is addressed here.
Tennis players have openly discussed taking substances that would have required a TUE. Agassi use of cortisone shots towards the back end of his career has been documented and Andy Murray has also spoken of taking cortisone for his back multiple times:http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=70742http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/tennis/article-2152619/French-Open-2012-Andy-Murray-beats-Jarkko-Nieminen-injury-scare.htmlToo many others have spoken about having to play with anti-inflammatory drugs, some of which would have required a TUE. It looks like its common place. What I want to is how many of them have been taking advantage of the system considering that in Serena’s leaked document, some of her TUE’s were retroactively dated.
Players may be risking health by popping pain pillshttp://www.eurosport.com/tennis/players-may-be-risking-health-by-popping-pain-pills_sto5806533/story.shtmlFor all the talk of banned performance-enhancing drugs in sport, mundane over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain medications may be more of an issue on the tennis tour, according to numerous players.Indeed, players competing at the U.S. Open which starts on Monday could be risking their long-term health by playing through pain to achieve their goals. In the final grand slam event of the year, when the likes of Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams are battling injuries, many are likely to popping pills to push their aching bodies one more time. "You would be surprised how many anti-inflammatories I take," said 15th-ranked Richard Gasquet, a Frenchman who has suffered numerous injuries during his career. "I do it a lot. Not during practice, but before matches. It's not something I would choose to do, but sometimes I have no choice. "It's nothing crazy to take anti-inflammatories. I imagine all the players are doing it. I know a lot of football (soccer) players, they do it a lot." […]Goran Ivanisevic said taking anti-inflammatories was a necessary evil. "When I won Wimbledon (in 2001), I was smashing them," he told Reuters. "I took them like candies. After a while I didn't even feel it, it didn't do me any good. But when you have a chance, in my case, to win Wimbledon, you take whatever, you don't care. "I hated pain so if the doctor said 'take two' I'd take five. But in the end I had shoulder surgery. The pain was so big that pain killers didn't work so I had to have surgery. "Pain-killers are actually the best thing you can take, it just prevents (pain) for that moment, for a week or two, but hopefully something worse doesn't happen and then you are in more trouble." The women's tour, the WTA, distributes detailed information to its players warning them of the dangers of over-use, while the men's tour, the ATP, says its physicians only prescribe anti-inflammatories "when indicated for the treatment of an injury". Andy Murray, who will try to add the U.S. Open to his recent Wimbledon and Olympic titles, is one of the more careful ones. "I only take an anti-inflammatory now and then if I'm having problems with my back or my hips," he said. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, twice a semi-finalist at Wimbledon, agreed. "I just hate these kind of things," the Frenchman said. "I take them really if I will play a semis or a final (if) I have something and I don't want the pain at all. Otherwise, I would not take it at all. I prefer to feel the pain and see how (the injury) is. "In the past, I had so many problems in my body, I took them sometimes. But it doesn't mean you don't have anything. It's just a fake. Sometimes you do worse to your body when you take these kind of things." But Mark Philippoussis, the Australian who reached the Wimbledon final in 2003, said ambitious players have little choice. "You do whatever it takes to get on the court and give yourself the best chance," he told Reuters. "Advil (ibuprofen), anti-inflammatories, that's like vitamin C for athletes. It's part of life. It's what you have to do." -I presume it's all Non-steroidal.
Surprised Gasquet didn't kiss someone with pills in their mouth.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kax7tLCOoRsTirelessly all over the place with with incredible speed and no effort...
Clearly visible the effects of PED in his game...
"Clearly visible the effects of PED in his game..."Clearly PEDs make a player accurate. And notice how long those points are. 0_0"Tirelessly all over the place with with incredible speed and no effort..."And grabbing certains points from twenty different matches doesn't show how he played during the rest of the match. It's just a snippet. A highlight reel. What is this proving? That Federer is a very talented player who can hit the spots? How does that prove he dopes? The troll just can't stand a thread where "Federer is a doper" isn't the topic of conversation.
@LopiJust ignore it. You can see how desperately it wants attention.
Lopi Lopi, Do you need my help to go watch Federer's past matches online??? How do you think he won so many slams and broke 90+% of the records in the Tennis book? By standing still? By over stressing?? is it why he is almost never injured?
Ok, apply some of the same arguments to Serena. Nah, you can't do it, can you?
Lopi Lopi, seems I just figured why Federer was able to achieve all his feats without doping... He was playing like a ballerina boy...
The bottom line is that this hack confirms what we suspected already - that Serena was taking more banned substances than anybody else and that authorities were complicit! The whitewash in the press is embarrassing to read. The intelligent debate would question whether TUEs are a legal loohole to legalised doping. The statement by australia feds is interesting - ~250 TUEs issued. The US should release similar anonymised TUE data. Looking forward to the next set of leaks.
This blog is the only place which talked about TUEs being abused as a backdoor form of legalized doping. For readers of this blog, what has been revealed is hardly a revelation. But MSM media continues to play dumb and refuses to ask the simple question if loading up on various drugs gives an unfair advantage to a player or not. If you are so sick that you need to take a pound of medicines, then don't play!
I'm no Serena fan and I'm all for exposing her, but I'm tired of people throwing toys out of their pram instead of actually looking at facts. We need facts. Serena was not "taking more banned substances than anybody else". Just a small look at the anti-doping code is all you need to see that the pain medication she was taking is *not banned* out of competition. The reason there are numerous TUEs for her is because she applied for TUEs when they were out of competition and not necessary. In reality, she has only ever had 3 real TUEs: for 5 days, 9 days and 14 days. All during known injuries. Boo hoo.
Why would she apply for TUE's that were "not necessary"? She should fire her doctors - or WADA fire theirs. Wait - there's probably another reason ...
Lance Armstrong got away with a full-on positive doping test, by backdating a TUE. Why on earth shouldn't we hunk that's been happening with Serena? It looks like the media, playing their proper role for once as being critical and sceptical after the lance Armstrong saga, have quickly fallen back into line these days. But really, that she is dominating the world like never before at 35, while being so sickly that she makes the rest of us look like eternal-life Olympian Gods, is utterly amazing!!
The naivety/willful ignorance from fans and journos alike is staggering. On the latter, I can only assume that the near ruination of David Walsh in his pursuit of Lance Armstrong has put people off investigating withiout absolute proof. I'm struggling otherwise to understand why no hack wants to expose the sport, aside from the obvious risk to their gravy train.Here, with this TUE revelation, it is all laid on - I know TUEs are not necessarily equal to full on cheating without declaration (Shriekapova) - but this raises a huge question on the validity of TUEs, and how easy it must be to have a TUE certifcate approved; perfect story for some investigative journalism.When one of the most dominant female tennis players ever known is still dominating into her mid-30s, despite claiming a whole plethora of illness and affliction - ditto her sister too - it is painfully apparent that something is badly wrong.And don't even get me started on Armstong-esqe backdating tactics... That's a whole phenomenon in its own.
She is a media darling and fits the two criteria: American and black female. Remember it's racist/sexist to say she is doping, despite all the obvious signs.
From the current Guardian UK online article:"But Fancy Bear, which has links to its country’s security agency GRU and has previously been accused of defacing Wada’s website, accessing the private whereabouts details of Stepanova, and hacking into the Democratic National Committee, promised it would release more information in the coming weeks."I usually despise hackers and their associated campaigns, but in this case, a mutual interest in exposing elite sports doping makes for necessary bedfellows - even if FB's motives are questionable.I personally cannot wait for more details.
Well when you think about the omerta in Tennis there might never be a whistle blower as there was in Athletics. It will take someone on the outside to bring that house of cards down.For example Wayne Odensik on the bottom end of it all has a blog were he has in true Orwellian fashion refers to himself as a retired Tennis player. He also says financially he's in a good place - not bad for a disgraced drug mule/user and cheat. Makes me wonder how much "They" paid him to keep his mouth shut because he doesn't seem like a character were integrity and loyalty flows from him in his professional dealings.
Yeah anyone who says tennis is clean need only look as far as Wayne Odesnik. But he was just a journeyman. A scapegoat. I'm actually surprised he never squealed. But maybe that's why he's in a good place financially. Maybe someone paid to shut him up. ;)
Since more Russian athletes are being stripped of their Beijing Olympics medals - this time a women's javelin thrower is stripped of her silver and a men's 400m relay bronze winner - Fancy Bear has new ammunition now in their quest to prove to the world that it's not just Russians who are cheating. Although it's not quite the same when an athlete has a TUE but I would certainly question those backdated TUEs. Too bad Shriekapova doesn't actually have a heart condition; then she could have gotten a backdated TUE as well. I can't wait to see who else is on a plethora of banned drugs.http://www.cbc.ca/sports/olympics/summer/trackandfield/russian-athletes-medals-stripped-beijing-1.3760106
ITF gets rid of 2 crooked umpires.. (and announces the news on a day when this story will be totally buried by the Fancy Bear leaks)"The International Tennis Federation announced today that Uzbekistan tennis officials Sherzod Hasanov and Arkhip Molotyagin have been banned for life and had their ITF officiating certification permanently revoked after being found guilty of offences under the Code of Conduct for Officials.Following investigations by the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU), Mr Hasanov and Mr Molotyagin were found guilty by an ITF Disciplinary Panel of charges, laid under the 2015 edition of the Code of Conduct for Officials, contrary to Articles A10, A13 and B1:- Using a mobile phone to communicate scores of matches over which they were officiating to a third party at the ITF Futures event in Tiberias, Israel between 7-9 September 2015;- Delaying the inputting of scores into their PDA device to allow the third party and/or other third parties to benefit by placing bets on matches in which they were officiating at the Tournament;- Delaying the inputting of scores and/or fraudulently manipulating scores by inputting fictitious deuce games in to their PDA device while officiating at other ITF Futures events over a period of 7 months;- That Mr Hasanov counselled or procured another official and/or officials to participate in the fraudulent manipulation of the ‘livescoring’ system on our around January 2015 including, but not limited to, Mr Molotyagin;- Failing to report to the Joint Certification Programme the unlawful conduct of officials whom they knew to be fraudulently manipulating the ‘live scoring’ system.http://www.itftennis.com/news/241319.aspx#BKiy1KTH7oT5Fzv8.99
Lol nice try ITF.
Is it only me who thinks that maybe these betting cases are tip of the iceberg? Wasn't there something similar in the first round of the US Open womens? I remember thinking then that they're sending a warning shot to discourage others. Its always the little nations that come out looking bad. In cricket (for the americans, its like baseball), there were similar betting scandals and the aussie stars got away with light warnings while the pakistanis got banned.
Isn't this the second time in recent memory that the ITF suspended/banned someone and buried the news under some other breaking sports story? Anyone recall?
This story has already been buried, as far as I can see.How we got to this point is an extremely complex sequence of events that factors in how Athletics and Road Cycling were handled, and the fallout witnessed by other sports' governing bodies.Basically, when it comes to doping in tennis:- journos don't care- fans don't/won't care- the ITF, ATP and WTA are either implicit or willing to cover up for players- players certainly don't careSo there is no hope. As long as the gravy train of millions and millions of dollars follows tennis, no-one is willing to shoot the Golden Goose.Which means for disallusioned fans of the sport like us, more and more abominations will rise in the sport; and each time, these 'outliers' will be treated as the norm.Tennis is fucked. If a story like the TUE leak gains no traction with the world's press, nothing will. Serena could now literally walk on court gargle from a bottle marked 'Stanozolol' and we would only hear about how brave she is.
Please check http://fancybear.net/page-2.htmlOur dear friend Bethanie Mattek-Sands and her TUE for DHEA was leaked.
Petra Kvitova is on that page also.Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome too - quelle surprise.
Kvitova for albuterol, Tame stuff, tbh.
Mattek-Sands is the most interesting reveal so far, IMO. It proves she was the athlete with a DHEA TUE, which I first suggested here, based on the CAS document redaction marks. Insane to grant a TUE for that medication for that "condition" under those circumstances. http://tennishasasteroidproblem.blogspot.com/2015/06/cas-2014a3751-x-vs-wada.htmlCan someone with regulatory authority please investigate Dr Eric Serrano?