John McEnroe & Steroids [Archive] -

John McEnroe & Steroids

01-12-2004, 06:41 AM
Report: McEnroe admits to steroids
Monday, January 12, 2004 Posted: 0152 GMT ( 9:52 AM HKT)

McEnroe has called for an overhaul of tennis' hierarchy.

SYDNEY, Australia (AP) -- John McEnroe has reportedly admitted he unknowingly took steroids during his tennis career.

"For six years I was unaware I was being given a form of steroid of the legal kind they used to give horses until they decided it was too strong even for horses," McEnroe was quoted as saying in The Daily Telegraph newspaper in Sydney on Monday.

McEnroe, 43, didn't say who gave him the steroids or for what reason.

The three-time Wimbledon champion's admission followed revelations by Greg Rusedski that he tested positive to nandrolone last July.

The Canadian-born British player said he was innocent and the steroid must have been contained in supplements dispensed by ATP tour trainers. (Full story)

McEnroe said the Rusedski case and the handling of other recent doping cases showed tennis' hierarchy needed an overhaul.

"Surely it's now time for tennis to have its own commissioner," he said. "We have enough problems in the sport. It's the last thing we need."

McEnroe was implicated in a doping scandal two years ago when his former wife Tatum O'Neil claimed the former No. 1 had used steroids late in his career.

McEnroe later called O'Neil's statements "ridiculous."

Drug testing in tennis started in the late 1980s, conducted by the Men's International Professional Tennis Council. The testing at that time was for recreational drugs only and not for those that were considered performance-enhancing.

01-12-2004, 08:02 AM
Mac probably took those drugs to comeback from injury

01-12-2004, 08:07 AM
Hmm, interesting but i suppose Mac's not risking anything now by bringing it out in public. In fact it might even increase ratings for the aus open where he's commentating.

J. Corwin
01-12-2004, 10:58 AM
Thanks for the article. Interesting thought. I wonder if he's saying that to back Greg up cuz he thinks he's innocent?

01-12-2004, 11:13 AM
I doubt whether this would really boost the ratings, but the article is interesting, for sure.

Tennis Fool
01-12-2004, 11:27 PM
"For six years I was unaware I was being given a form of steroid of the legal kind they used to give horses until they decided it was too strong even for horses"


His ex-wife says otherwise ;)

01-13-2004, 01:10 AM

01-15-2004, 04:17 PM
excerpt from the latest Tennis Week interview:

Tennis Week: You were quoted as saying you took steroids during your career. Was that quote accurate? Did you take steroids?

John McEnroe: What needs to be cleared up was it wasn't performance-enhancing (drugs). Number one, it was an anti-inflammatory and completely legal and I later found out it contained a steroid and I stopped taking it immediately. I was not saying I took peformance-enhancing steroids because I did not. I was simply saying, in a way I was defending (Greg) Rusedski, who said he knew nothing about how this substance got in his system. I said "that's conceivable" because that has happened in the past. When I was younger, people weren't as aware or informed about steroids or supplements. They (would) take things and they (would) have no idea what they are taking and it has become less of an issue, but it was a different time back then. You heard stories back then in football where they'd pour a bunch of pills out on a table in a football locker room and these guys would take the pills not knowing exactly what it was they're taking and then their eyes are like bugging out of their heads. And back then, no one sort of questioned that. The person that gave me this anti-inflammatory told me later this was banned from being used on horses. It made me think: "If they banned it for horses, then it has got to be strong" and I began to develop some serious stomach pain. I stopped taking it. But there's a big difference from what we're talking about — taking an anti-inflammatory — and taking a steroid as a performance-enhancing drug.

Tennis Week: In your view, is steroid use a problem or wide-spread in tennis?

John McEnroe: I don't think so. I think it's far less of a problem than in other sports. I still they think they should test and they should obviously investigate these issues, but do I think it's a wide-spread problem? No.