Thursday 27 October 2016

Rafael Nadal asks International Tennis Federation to make his drug test results public

Published 26/04/2016 | 17:06

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal has written a personal letter to the International Tennis Federation asking for all of his drug test results to be made public.

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Nadal took legal action on Monday against a former French government minister Roselyne Bachelot who claimed the world number five's seven-month injury lay-off in 2012 was "probably due to a positive doping test".

The ITF confirmed on Tuesday its receipt of Nadal's letter, that the Spaniard has never failed a drugs test and said he is free to make public his anti-doping records, to which he has full access.

It is understood Nadal feels disappointed by a perceived lack of support from tennis authorities, whom he believes should be more pro-active in defending the game's clean athletes.

In excerpts from the letter to ITF president David Haggerty, obtained by Press Association Sport, Nadal wrote: "It can't be free anymore in our tennis world to speak and to accuse without evidence.

"Please make all my information public, please make public my biological passport and my complete history of anti-doping controls and tests.

"From now on I ask you to communicate when I am tested, and the results, as soon as they are ready from your labs."

Nadal's letter comes as tennis continues to confront doping controversy. Maria Sharapova admitted to testing positive for meldonium at this year's Australian Open, with the Russian now provisionally suspended and facing a lengthy ban.

And British number one Andy Murray told the Mail on Sunday earlier this month he had been suspicious of some opponents who "don't seem to be getting tired".

In his letter, Nadal called for greater transparency from the sport's governing bodies. "I believe we have to continue with the fight against doping and make the fight stronger and better if possible," Nadal wrote.

"As a player, at first an amateur and then a professional, I have been sure our sport is clean. It is necessary that our sport becomes a flagship in a world where transparency and honesty are two pillars of our conduct and way of living."

In a statement released on Wednesday, the ITF responded that Nadal was free to make public his own test results.

The statement read: "The ITF has received a letter from Rafael Nadal that includes a request to release his personal test results under the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP).

"The ITF can confirm that Mr. Nadal has never failed a test under the TADP and has not been suspended at any time for an anti-doping rule violation (or for any other reason related to the TADP).

"Mr. Nadal, as all other players who are subject to the TADP, has access to his anti-doping records through WADA's ADAMS database and is free to make them available. The accuracy of any such release would be verified by the ITF."

Nadal beat Japan's Kei Nishikori in the final of the Barcelona Open on Sunday. The win followed up his triumph at the Monte Carlo Masters the week before and equalled Guillermo Vilas' record of 49 clay-court titles

Press Association

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