Simona Halep, a two-time Grand Slam champion, has been banned four years for violating anti-doping rules.
This decision was announced Tuesday by the International Tennis Integrity Agency. As you’d expect, Halep isn’t thrilled with this decision.
“I have devoted my life to the beautiful game of tennis. I take the rules that govern our sport very seriously and take pride in the fact I have never knowingly or intentionally used any prohibited substance,” Halep said. “I refused to accept their decision of a four-year ban.”
Halep tested positive for roxadustat at the US Open in 2022. Apparently, there were also irregularities in her athlete biological passport.
Karen Moorhouse, the chief executive officer for the ITIA, released a statement on Halep’s ban.
“After a complex and rigorous hearing process, we welcome the independent tribunal’s decision,” Moorhouse said. “The volume of evidence for the tribunal to consider in both the roxadustat and ABP proceedings was substantial.”
Halep, 31, captured her first Grand Slam title at Roland-Garros in 2018. The following year, she defeated Serena Williams to claim her first Wimbledon title.
In October of 2017, Halep was the No. 1 ranked player in the world.