It seems like the career of Simona Halep is pretty much over. The Romanian tennis player already missed over a year of tennis due to her doping case being dragged out, but we have a conclusion now, and it's the worst possible news for the Romanian.
Despite being defended by multiple prominent tennis figures and described as a person who would never do anything wrong, Halep has been officially suspended by the ITIA for 4 years for a breach of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme.
The news came down on Tuesday, September 12th, with the ruling coming one day earlier on September 11th. The report published by the ITIA states that Halep has intentionally committed breaches of the Anti-Doping Programme.
The breaches in question are:
- The presence and use of roxadustat as evidenced in Halep’s urine sample collected on 29 August 2022 at the US Open.
- Use of a prohibited substance or method during 2022, based on collection and analysis of 51 blood samples provided by the player as part of the ABP programme.
Halep claimed that the first one was due to an accidental ingestion, but the court found the volume of the substance ingested too great for it to have happened accidentally. The second one was because three different Athlete Passport Management Units determined that doping was likely the cause of her biological passport irregularities.
Her suspension will end on October 6th 2026 with ITIA CEO Karen Moorhouse releasing a statement.
After a complex and rigorous hearing process, we welcome the independent tribunal’s decision. The ITIA has followed the proper processes as we would with any other individual - in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code - fulfilling our purpose and responsibility to uphold the principle of fair competition, on behalf of the sport.