Simona Halep, a two-time Grand Slam champion, has pledged to fight until the end and clean her name after failing a doping test.
Former Wimbledon champion, she said that cheating was never in her thoughts and that she feels “completely confused” and “betrayed”.
The International Tennis Integrity Agency reported Friday that the US Open’s world number nine was positive for Roxadustat, a blood-booster.
“Simona Halep (a 31-year-old Romanian tennis star) has been temporarily suspended under Article 7.12.1, 2022 Tennis Anti-Doping Programme, (TADP),” the body stated in a statement.
After the announcement was made, Halep took to social media and stated: “Today begins my hardest match: A fight for truth.”
“I was notified by Roxadustat that I had tested positive in a very low amount of Roxadustat. This was the most shocking news of my life.
“I have never once thought of cheating throughout my entire career. It is completely against the values I was raised with.”
She is the most prominent tennis player to have failed a drug test since Maria Sharapovova six years ago.
Halep said, “Facing this unfair situation, it makes me feel confused and betrayed.” I will fight to the end to prove I didn’t knowingly take any prohibited substance. I believe that sooner or later the truth will be revealed.
It’s not about titles or money. It’s about honour and the relationship I have formed with tennis over the past 25 years.
Roxadustat is a substance that can increase the production of red blood cells, which aids athletes in endurance.