Doping questions revisited [Archive] -

Doping questions revisited

02-01-2004, 09:45 PM
I didn't know that in fact there has never been any proof that the supplements the trainers gave out were contaminated. This puts a whole new look on the doping controversy, imo.

Drugs agency worried about ATP
Leo Schlink

THE World Anti-Doping Agency is poised to re-open cases against seven players who last year tested positive to the steroid nandrolone, but were cleared on a technicality.

The revelation comes as Greg Rusedski prepares for his hearing in Montreal next week, when his career could possibly end with a maximum two-year ban.
Perturbed by aspects of an ATP investigation into how seven players were last year exonerated despite testing positive to nandrolone, WADA is next week producing an interim report into the affair.

The seven players, including Czech Bohdan Ulihrach, were cleared after it was found they may have used rehydration tablets and drinks provided by trainers from the ATP, which runs the men's circuit outside the four grand slams.

But investigations have shown the tablets were not contaminated. The players were let off when the onus fell on the ATP to prove the positive traces did not come from a product it provided.

WADA science director Dr Olivier Rabin said the agency would be "reinforcing our concerns our concerns the ATP".

"The evidence is that the tablets were not contaminated," Rabin said. "When you've pointed to this as a source and cannot find nandrolone there, then you have to be worried."

Rusedski is today expected to receive a letter from the ATP outlining logistical details of his scheduled hearing.

The left-hander tested positive in the US last July after the ATP banned its trainers from providing supplements.

WADA director-general David Howman, a New Zealand lawyer, said the seven positive cases demanded greater scrutiny.

"It could be systematic doping for all we know," Howman said. "I don't want to publicly suggest that's what it was.

"But if the possibility suggests that it can't be the tablets, why wasn't it investigated further?"

02-01-2004, 10:43 PM
wow, interesting.... I thought it had been proven that it was from ATP Tablets. Isn't that how Ulihrach got cleared? The whole thing is seriously fucked up, pardon my language

02-02-2004, 12:19 AM
Yup. That's how he was cleared. But according to this article, there was never any proof that the tablets were contaminated, the ATP simply couldn't prove they weren't contaminated. So since the issue was raised and some doubt was thrown on the tablets, the guys got off.

02-02-2004, 12:45 AM
hmmmmmm interesting......

the whole thing is just very sad!

02-02-2004, 08:38 AM
It's always more interesting when it's the proving it WASN'T, as opposed to proving it WAS.

02-02-2004, 12:37 PM
Proving WASN'T is always interesting. :)

02-11-2004, 05:03 PM
Found this article. Last year, it was Federer and Flipper who were tested the most. Andy and Andre were tested 21 times last year.

Why can't all sports test our athletes like they do in tennis? That's one reason I like tennis so much. It's a relatively "clean" sport (unlike baseball, football, etc.)

TENNIS: Federer and Flip tested the most


MARK Philippoussis was among the most frequently drug-tested players in the world last season as the Victorian reclaimed a top-10 ranking.
The Wimbledon and US Open finalist completed drug tests on 19 occasions, including three blood scans collected for EPO analysis.

World No.*1 Roger Federer topped the tennis anti-doping program with French Open champion Juan Carlos Ferrero, both submitting to 23 tests, including out-of-competition scans.

US Open champion Andy Roddick, Australian Open winner Andre Agassi and former world No.*1 Carlos Moya all completed 21 tests.

Philippoussis topped the list of Australian players, leading the way from Todd Woodbridge (17), Wayne Arthurs (15) and Lleyton Hewitt, whose limited season meant he was scrutinised 14 times.

Philippoussis was tested in Indian Wells, Miami, Malmo and then – in an unbroken five-week sequence – in Rome, Hamburg, Paris, Queen's Club and at Wimbledon.

He was twice tested in Los Angeles, then Montreal and Cincinnati. The Williamstown serve-volleyer was then urine-tested during the Davis Cup semi-final and twice more during the final at Rod Laver Arena in November.

Philippoussis was blood-tested in Miami, Wimbledon and Los Angeles. A total of 12 Australian male players were tested last season.

Apart from Davis Cuppers Philippoussis, Woodbridge, Arthurs and Hewitt, doubles star Paul Hanley was tested 10 times.

Also compelled to participate in the tennis push to rid itself of the nandrolone controversy were Jaymon Crabb, Scott Draper, Josh Eagle and Chris Guccione.

Nathan Healey, Jordan Kerr, Peter Luczak and Joe Sirianni also were probed.

Agassi and French Open winner Albert Costa were both tested three times out of competition. Hewitt was the only Australian subject to off-site scanning with a November 19 test in Melbourne.

Hewitt was tested again last week at the Davis Cup tie in Adelaide, both in and out of competition.

Meanwhile, Greg Ruseski's positive test to banned steroid nandrolone came after a first-round loss to Queenslander Scott Draper in Indianapolis last year.

Rusedski, now facing a career-ending two-year suspension as an anti-doping tribunal in Montreal evaluates the Briton's evidence, had not been previously tested in five previous events, including Wimbledon. The Grand Slam Cup winner contested the French Open, Surbiton, Queen's Club, Nottingham and Wimbledon before playing Draper in the US in July.

02-11-2004, 05:42 PM
What I don't understand is why it's not equal... why should some players be tested more than others?

02-11-2004, 06:04 PM
maybe due to their size:shrug: or maybe speculation:scratch:

02-11-2004, 06:11 PM
Randomness might have something to do with it. If the testing is truly random, there will be clusters.

Also, winning tournaments might subject someone to tests more often.

02-11-2004, 06:16 PM
perhaps.... it still seems sort of haphazard. Why don't they just test everyone who's in a tournament draw at every tournament?

02-11-2004, 06:17 PM
Because then it wouldn't be a "surprise." They never announce the drug testing, they just show up and say gimmee your urine. :lol:

02-11-2004, 06:19 PM
but if they knew they had to do it regularly throughout the year, surprise wouldn't be an issue. It's not like the substances disappear from their bodies that fast, if they had to do it every tourn. they played, they couldn't avoid it.

I dunno it just seems beyond random... haphazard even. It just seems weird to me, I can't put my finger on it.

02-11-2004, 06:23 PM
Maybe Rogi's a narc and they're keeping a close eye on him? ;)

Action Jackson
02-12-2004, 05:40 AM
Well if you know when the testers are coming, then they would know when to use the masking agents , and usually players if they are smart will take substances during the off-season, injury layoffs or non- tournament weeks.

It would be interesting if they actually would announce if a high profile player tested positive, or sweep it under the carpet. Then again that depends on where that player is from and who they are as well?

02-14-2004, 01:04 PM
from Tennis Week:

Agassi, Roddick Question ATP Tour's Handling Of Drug Issue

Photo By Susan Mullane By Richard Pagliaro
Two of the ATP Tour's biggest stars —Andre Agassi and Andy Roddick — are calling Tour leaders into question over the recent drug issues surrounding the sport. Eight-time Grand Slam champion Agassi believes the ATP has failed to fully inform players on developments in the Tour's anti-doping policy, leaving the players to defend the integrity of the game without adequate information.

"The ATP needs to do something because they've left the players out on their own," said Agassi, who advanced to the quarterfinals of the Siebel Open with last night's 7-6(6), 6-4 victory over South African Wesley Moodie in San Jose. "There's no satisfactory answer I've received as to why the players are out there on their own in a media frenzy answering questions uninformed, and being responsible for the integrity of our sport. That needs to come from our leadership and I haven't seen it yet."

Drug use — and the tests designed to detect it — has become a growing issue on the ATP Tour. In the past week, doubles specialist Graydon Oliver was suspended for two months after testing positive for a banned diuretic, and former U.S. Open finalist Greg Rusedski appeared before a tribunal to explain his positive drug test for the banned substance nandrolone.

Last July, the ATP admitted that seven players who tested positive for nandrolone during a period from late August 2002 to mid-May 2003 may have ingested the banned substance through contaminated tablets inadvertently supplied by ATP Tour trainers. As a result of the finding, the ATP announced it immediately reinstated Bohdan Ulihrach, who was suspended from professional tennis for two years on May 2nd, fined $43,770 and forced to forfeit 100 ranking after testing positive for nandrolone metabolites above the IOC-cutoff of 2.0 for males that determines whether a sample is positive.

The third-ranked Roddick suggested the Tour's drug policy doesn't permit the players to properly prepare for the demands of playing a global game and believes some supplements are necessary for survival amid a grueling schedule.

"In an international sport like ours, you can play one day in Asia and two days later in scorching hot weather in the States and you are supposed to drink water on the changeovers," Roddick said. "That's a bit of a stretch, no matter how good an athlete you are. You are going to need something to help, like vitamins. There's something that doesn't quite fit there. Right now it's kind of a rough situation because it's impossible to do what we do 46 weeks a year on water."

02-14-2004, 01:07 PM
It's sort of crazy for the players to claim they can't take electrolites or vitamins on the change over.

But, I do agree with Agassi. The leaders in the sport should be speaking out, and not letting the players answer all the questions. I suppose Andre gets these questions more than most because he is a senior top player.

J. Corwin
02-15-2004, 12:30 AM
It's good that these players are speaking out about this issue since I think it's ridiculous not being allowed to take multivitamins, for example. Everyone can be given the choice to take it/them or not. Not steroids, but vitamins. Equality of opportunity.

02-15-2004, 01:00 AM
There is absolutely no ban on any player from taking vitamins.

J. Corwin
02-15-2004, 01:01 AM
I'm talking about commonality in substances involved.

02-15-2004, 01:05 AM
I'm sorry. I don't understand what you mean.

J. Corwin
02-15-2004, 03:11 AM
It's ok, my thought pattern and written diction can be convoluted at times. :)

What I "really" meant was that there could be similar stuff in vitamins, as there are in other performance enhancing drugs. Well that's the assumption I took at least.

02-15-2004, 04:26 AM
It's ok, my thought pattern and written diction can be convoluted at times. :)

What I "really" meant was that there could be similar stuff in vitamins, as there are in other performance enhancing drugs. Well that's the assumption I took at least.

I think that's because that's what complaining athletes would have you believe. Also there has been so much misinformation about the tablets the trainers gave out.

Vitamins do not contain performance enhancing drugs. Performance enhancing drugs are not vitamins. They are not minerals, and they are not electrolites. All of these things are allowed.

02-15-2004, 04:39 AM
Thank god for Andre speaking out. He is the point man that everyone looks to and listens to. :worship:

02-15-2004, 04:44 AM
I agree with you star, but it is troubling when Andy recounts a players meeting when they are asking for advice and the ATP tells them it's their problem.

It sounds like, for whatever reason, they are nervous and unsure about what they are allowed to take and I think they're in the right to be demanding answers. I think also shame on the ATP for forcing these guys to go out there and answer all the questions - it's too bad because it takes the positive attention away from their on-court accomplishments and that's unfair.

02-15-2004, 05:21 AM
I think that all of that is true, but the carping that they can't even take vitamins is ..... well, hyperbole.

Part of the problem is that the ATP undoubtedly feels constrained to speak about the cases of other players candidly. Those players say.... oh... my supplement was contaminated (this has got to be the number one excuse among athletes) and then the players get nervous because they can't hear the other side of the story. Also the whole thing about the tablets the trainers gave out was distorted.

02-15-2004, 05:23 AM
And......... I'm never that hyped about a fairness argument. ;)

J. Corwin
02-15-2004, 08:27 AM
Don't some multivitamins contain minerals too?
Well I suppose obviously they'd be different minerals.;)

02-15-2004, 12:43 PM
Performance enhancing drugs aren't minerals.

Minerals, electrolytes, vitamins are not performance enhancing drugs....... actually they aren't drugs of any sort.

02-15-2004, 01:16 PM
I just saw the awful news that Marco Pantani was found dead in his hotel room. For those of you who don't follow cycling, he was champion cyclist who won the Giro d'Italia in 1998 and was a stage winner in the Tour de France. He has a short suspension for drug use for an elevated hematacrit, an indicator of blood doping. There were many rumors of drug use surrounding him.

He recently quit cycling. The articles said he had been suffering with depression.

It's very sad news to me.

Action Jackson
02-15-2004, 02:09 PM
star Pantani's death has been written about on the non-tennis section. He was an endurance pro cyclist they have EPO for breakfast, he was one of them that caught.

02-15-2004, 05:08 PM
I saw that story, too, star, and it made me sad. I didn't know who he was but to die so young is always very sad to hear. :sad:

BTW, has the verdict been handed down in the Rusedski case yet?

Does anyone else think that Rusedski is being used as a scapegoat or being held up as an example to the other players? I seriously doubt anyone in the Top Ten would be hung out to dry the way this guy has been. He's not one of my favorites, but he is an "expendable" player, and therefore, an easy target. What do you all think?

02-15-2004, 05:16 PM
I tend to agree with that assessment, tangy. Then again you also have the factor that the top guys are just tested more often, or at least it seems, and it'd just plain be harder for them to get away with it. I don't know.

The thing that bothers me about the whole situation is the lack of attention. the ATP is being so tight-lipped about the whole thing that it's deflecting the questions onto the players, and I just do not think that's right, because quite frankly they don't know the whole story either. So they say these things which are then snipped and cut and tacked with a headline like "Agassi, Roddick take aim at ATP over drugs" and the whole thing turns into a mess. I think the ATP needs to step up, provide these guys with a comprehensive list of what they are and are not allowed to put into their bodies, and get a PR person to deal with the questions.

02-15-2004, 05:21 PM
I agree. The ATP's handling of this whole thing has been rather bizarre.

Stuff like this, no wonder Lleyton Hewitt hates them so much.

02-15-2004, 05:28 PM
Exactly what would you like the ATP to be doing?

This was posted in GM

It's not like the ATP is just saying "It's your problem," and not giving any information.

Also Der Fuerer posted a long article about banned substances.

I work with adicts. Oh my god, they have stories!!

I tested postive for methamphetamines because unknown to me there was methamphetamines mixed into my can of coffee.

I tested positive for marijuana because someone who wanted to get me in trouble must have sprinkled it on my food . (the food inquestion being a salad, chicken, and a soft drink)

I tested positive for meth because my boyfriend does meth and I just had sex with him before the test.

People who use drugs have 1,000 stories.

02-15-2004, 05:29 PM
Also I find it hard to feel sorry for people who are leading extraordinarily privileged lives, who have to face just a small amount of adversity in the press.

02-15-2004, 05:32 PM
I'm not talking about excuses someone like Greg is giving. I'm talking about things like what Andre and Andy are saying. And I am as confident as possible that neither Andre or Andy use drugs. I just don't like the fact that the ATP is leaving these players out there high and dry and making them the ones to answer questions. It puts them in a no-win situation. Either they say "I don't want to discuss it" which would certainly raise suspicion, or they speak their mind and get bad press anyway.

I dunno, something about it just seems off. I guess I can't really put my finger on it. It's not that I feel sorry for Andy or Andre or anyone else asked about it, it just seems fishy.

Then you also have the inconsistency. Why are some cases kept top-secret when others are splashed everywhere? That information train is coming from someone and there's gotta be a reason for it.

02-15-2004, 07:02 PM
What cases are you saying are kept top secret, and which are splattered everywhere?

And exactly what do you mean about what Andy and Andre are saying? It seems to me that Andy is making some outlandish charge when he complains about having to only drink water on changeovers.

What would you like the ATP to do about having the players field questions about doping? Would you like them to try to ban reporters from asking the questions? I don't think that would be helpful. Other than that, what should the ATP do? Give canned answers to the players for their replies? What are you complaining that the ATP is not doing that it could do?

02-15-2004, 07:03 PM
If you are saying that Greg's case was splattered all over, you must remember that Greg was the one who spoke to the media, and not the ATP. I don't think the ATP has discussed it at all with the media.

03-03-2004, 03:37 AM
Rios is probably laughing when he reads Agassi is on this commission.

LONDON (Reuters) - The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) said on Monday it had set up a task force to tackle players' fears about contaminated supplements.

"The aim is to develop short- and long-term solutions designed to help players manage the risks associated with taking vitamins, minerals and nutritional supplements," the ATP said in a statement.

Seven players were exonerated last year after an independent inquiry ruled they had taken contaminated substances handed out by ATP trainers. The ATP learned of this problem in May.

Former world number one Andre Agassi, Britain's Tim Henman and 2002 French Open winner Albert Costa are three of 10 players who will serve on the task force.

Speaking at the Dubai Open, Henman said: "Given the present circumstances I think it's something the players are taking very, very seriously and this task force was first talked about after the players' meeting at the Australian Open.

"It's fair to say there's a little bit of uncertainty among the players. The Task Force is put in place for everybody to try and understand a little bit more and find a solution."

Last month Agassi said players were scared about what they could or could not take and called on the ATP to show leadership on the issue.

Henman added: "We would like to hear from the medical side and the experts what the best way forward is because if you're playing very long, demanding matches in the heat you require some sort of supplement to make sure your body keeps the right minerals and salts.

"At the moment, players feel you can't take that risk because there's a possibility of taking something that is contaminated. We want to find a way of taking something with the assurance it is what it's meant to be."

British number two Greg Rusedski, who failed a random test for the steroid nandrolone last July, is waiting for the result of a hearing held in Montreal last month.

Rusedski, who denies taking performance-enhancing drugs, faces a two-year ban if found guilty.

Jan Leschly, once ranked 10th in the world and currently chairman and chief executive of a healthcare company, will chair the supplement group.

03-03-2004, 03:40 AM
I can't believe there hasn't been an annoucement made about Rusedski's doping case yet. Way to keep a guy hanging! It's not like he has a career or anything. :rolleyes:

03-03-2004, 03:43 AM
Not so much of one. ;)

Besides, he's the one who made the whole thing public. He could play if he wanted.