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Other SportsHalep to return to tennis after ban reduced to nine months by...

Halep to return to tennis after ban reduced to nine months by CAS

Former world number one Simona Halep can return to the WTA Tour with immediate effect after her four-year ban for doping was reduced to nine months by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Halep was provisionally suspended in October 2022 when Roxadustat was detected in a urine sample at the 2022 US Open while the use of another prohibited substance was also flagged in her biological passport in September 2022.

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She was handed a four-year sanction by the International Tennis Federation in September 2023.

Halep, a two-time grand slam champion, took her case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport and they today partially upheld her appeal, reducing the sanction and backdating it to October 2022.

CAS agreed with Halep that Roxadustat had entered her body unintentionally. In a statement, it said: “Having carefully considered all the evidence put before it, the CAS Panel determined that Ms. Halep had established, on the balance of probabilities, that the Roxadustat entered her body through the consumption of a contaminated supplement which she had used in the days shortly before 29 August 2022 and that the Roxadustat, as detected in her sample, came from that contaminated product. 

“As a result, the CAS Panel determined that Ms. Halep had also established, on the balance of probabilities, that her anti-doping rule violations were not intentional.”

As for the second charge, relating to the biological passport, CAS added: “Having regard to the evidence as a whole, the CAS Panel was not comfortably satisfied that an anti-doping rule violation under Article 2.2. of the TADP had occurred. It therefore dismissed that charge.”

Halep, 32, will now look to rebuild her career after a long period of inactivity.

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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