Romanian tennis player Simona Halep files appeal against four-year doping ban
Former world no. 1 and two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep has filed an appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the four-year ban she received for anti-doping rule breaches. CAS announced on October 24 that it has registered the appeal in which Halep “requests that the Challenged Decision be set aside and that her sanction be reduced.”
The CAS statement reads: “The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has registered the appeal filed by the Romanian tennis player, Ms Simona Halep (the Athlete), against the decision rendered by the International Tennis Integrity Agency Tribunal dated September 22, 2023, (the Challenged Decision), in which she was found to have committed Anti-Doping Rule Violations and sanctioned with a four-year period of ineligibility commencing on October 7, 2022, and the disqualification of all results obtained in competitions taking place in the period August 29, 2022, to October 7, 2022, including forfeiture of any medals, titles, ranking points and prize money.”
A panel of arbitrators will rule on the appeal, the court also said, adding that “it is not possible to indicate a time frame for the issuance of the decision.”
“The CAS Panel’s decision will be final and binding, with the exception of the parties’ right to file an appeal to the Swiss Federal Tribunal within 30 days on limited grounds,” the same source said.
Simona Halep was provisionally suspended in October 2022 after testing positive for roxadustat at the US Open - a prohibited substance considered a blood doping agent. On September 12, 2023, the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) announced that an independent tribunal suspended Halep for four years for doping. This means she will not be allowed to play professional tennis until October 6, 2026.
Halep has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and, in an official recent statement, reiterated that she has “never knowingly or intentionally used any prohibited substance.”
Simona Halep is one of the most successful Romanian athletes of all time. She has won 24 WTA titles in her career, including two Grand Slam titles at Roland Garros (2018) and Wimbledon (2019). She was also the leader of the WTA ranking of the best female tennis players in the world for 64 weeks between October 2017 and January 2019.
(Photo source: Mircea Nicolescu/Dreamstime.com)