Tennis star suspended for positive doping test issues strong statement amid investigation | Tennis | sport

Slovak tennis player Andrej Martin, who played against Novak Djokovic last year, has been suspended after being charged with doping. The International Tennis Federation discovered that the 32-year-old tested positive for an illegal substance on June 7.

Martin has been suspended until further notice, with ongoing investigations. The 204-ranked player was in a men’s singles match at the Bratislava Open, with the overall competition being won by Alexander Shevchenko.

The player said the news of his suspension surprised him and ‘rejects’ the claim that he took a banned substance on purpose and to gain an advantage. He released a statement saying: “From a young age my parents taught me to be honest both in sport and in life. I have always been the same, people who know me know very well. how much I judge fraud and lies.

“The news of the positive doping test shocked me. I categorically reject the idea that I deliberately took anything on the list of prohibited substances. I use very few supplements and have not changed any over the of the last five years.

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“I have always approached training and swords honestly, as I believed that with honesty alone you can become a true winner. However, I strongly condemn all prohibited methods of ‘correcting’ sports scores. Any this situation is incomprehensible to me because I have done dozens of tests throughout my career and I had no idea that each time the result would be negative.

Martin, who once ranked No. 93 in the world, regularly represents Slovakia at the Davis Cup, despite having no career titles to his name. He reached the final of the Croatia Open in 2016, losing to Fabio Fognini in straight sets. In arguably the toughest match of his career, Martin played against Djokovic in the semi-finals of the 2021 Belgrade Open, who was the tournament’s top seed. Djokovic survived a scare coming back after losing the first set 6-1 to win the next two sets, dropping just four games.

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Djokovic is still waiting to find out if he can play the US Open later this month, with many calling on President Joe Biden to ease travel restrictions in America so the Wimbledon winner can compete. As things stand, no one can enter the country unless they have been vaccinated.

Twenty-one-time Grand Slam winner Djokovic hasn’t been stung and so hopes the rules will change ahead of the tournament, revealing he’s preparing for the competition as if he’s definitely going to feature. He wrote on his social media: “I am preparing as if I will be cleared to finish while waiting to find out if there is space for me to travel to the United States. Fingers crossed.”

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