By Nicole Rogers
With the reputation of cycling tarnished again by Lance Armstrong been stripped of his 7 Tour de France wins, doping in sport is coming to the forefront. Andy Murray calls for more unannounced drug tests to be carried out in Tennis. The British number one and world number 3 Andy Murray clearly doesn’t want his sport to be tarnished with the cheating scandals that cycling is experiencing at the moment.
Murray believes it is important to have random drug tests taking place during the athletes off-season. He is happy to take a blood test to prove he is free from doping as he carried out a random test during the weekend at his hotel. “‘On Saturday night it was completely random and that’s good because we’re not used to doing many blood tests.”
Tennis similar to cycling requires a great amount of stamina and endurance especially when Men’s match’s can last up to 5 sets and nearly 5 hours on some occasions.
This stance on random drug testing is not one which Murray has always portrayed in the media rather a change of heart due to the Lance Armstrong case. Murray had once spoken out complaining about having to take a random blood test at 6 a.m in the morning, but now he see’s the relevance of these tests.
Murray believes tennis is quite a clean sport especially with regards to the top players, although Murray admits he’s only had 4 or 5 blood tests all season but many other urine samples taken. Murray also believes there is less scope for doping in tennis because cycling is more about endurance than skill and doping can’t produce talent or skill you don’t already possess.
In 2010 Murray didn’t have one out of competition drug test. Murray feels this is when any cheats may be caught out. Murray was disgusted when Wayne Odesnik was caught with human growth hormones and was only banned from competing in the ATB tour for 6 months a 2 year ban which was then reduced. Odesnik was not caught by the Tennis Federation but rather the authorities when the hormones were discovered in his luggage when going through Melbourne airport by customs officers.
In other Tennis news Juan Martin Del Potro defeated Roger Federer in his hometown to take the Swiss Indoor title in Basle on Sunday 6-4 6-7(7/5) 7-6(7/3). This was a shock victory for the Argentinian with him losing to the World number one six times during this year. Del Potro put a stop to what would have been Federer’s three tournament streak.
Showing what a true athlete he is Federer pushed the second set to a tie breaker and came out on top for it to go to a third set deciding set, yet another tie breaker was to decide the outcome of the match but Del Potro came out on top. This performance by Del Potro could be seen as revenge for his defeat by Federer during the semi finals of the 2012 Olympics in June.
With Rafael Nadal’s withdraw announced last week from the Paris Master’s this week and the Barclay’s World Tour Final London due to injury the question stand will he return next year? Nadal hasn’t competed since his second round loss in Wimbledon back in June, during his career he has been haunted with injuries and the latest injury could prove career threatening.
Finally with the tennis season coming to an end Novak Djokovic will claim back his title of the best player in the world, regaining his title as the current world number 1 Federer on November 5th. Federer had regained the title after his win at Wimbledon. The Swiss native will not have enough points to stay at the top, as he will not be defending his title at the Paris Master so he can rest for the end of season tournament Barclay’s ATP World Tour Finals London where he is also the reigning champion.