Nadal wants his drug-test results made public
Fourteen-time grand slam champion Rafael Nadal wrote to the president of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and asked for all of his drug-test results and blood profile records to be made public. This was an effort to quash unsubstantiated accusations of doping against him. "It can't be free anymore in our tennis world to speak and to accuse without evidence," Rafa wrote.
Former French Minister for Health and Sport Roselyne Bachelot accused Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal of doping. Bachelot said that Nadal's seven-month injury hiatus in 2012 was ''probably due to a positive doping test.'' Bachelot's remarks on Nadal came after it was announced that Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova had tested positive during the Australia Open for taking a banned drug.
Nadal's name previously crept up in relation to doping, when in 2011, former tennis great Yannick Noah accused Spanish athletes of widespread doping. Further in 2013, retired Belgian player Christophe Rochus questioned Nadal's ability to dominate the 2012 French Open and still fall to injury two weeks later at Wimbledon.
Facing accusations that he sat out portions of 2012 because he feared testing positive for banned substances, Nadal denied he had ever used performance enhancers to recover sooner from injuries. "I am a completely clean guy. I have never had the temptation of doing wrong," Nadal said. "When I get injury, I get injury. I never take nothing to be back quicker," he added.
International Tennis Federation (ITF) said that accusations made by Bachelot against Nadal were not only surprising, but also incorrect. The names of all players penalised for violating the tennis anti-doping program are announced publicly as required by the rules of the program and the world anti-doping code, ITF added.
The Spanish Government and Olympic Committee came in support of Rafael Nadal after a former French official accused him of doping. The Spanish Olympic Committee said that Nadal had passed the innumerable anti-doping controls throughout his career. Spanish sports minister Miguel Cardenal blasted Bachelot calling her comments "surprisingly frivolous" and that she insulted one of the most important athletes in the history of tennis.
Nadal never failed a drug test in his many years on the ATP Tour and has always denied ever using a banned substance. He used new therapies for his knee problems, including stem-cell therapy and platelet-rich plasma therapy.
Nadal said he filed a defamation lawsuit against the former French health minister Roselyne Bachelot who accused him of doping. Nadal warned in March that he would sue Bachelot for making unfounded allegations. "Through this case, I intend not only to defend my integrity and my image as an athlete but also the values I have defended all my career," Nadal said.