||01-15-2013 12:06 PM
Cristophe Rochus: Doping rampant, mentions Nadal and Soderling
Credit to MTF for this article
Is doping a reality in tennis ?
Of course it is a reality. I was already saying that more than ten years ago. It is a sport that is more and more physical, so there are inevitably more temptations to take enhanching performance drugs. Now, with the Armstrong issue, we are now admitting it’s not because someone has never been controlled positive that it means that person has never been doping. When one can afford good doctors, to make some personal researches on the subject, and to have some resources, it is possible to take undetectable drugs products. So in my opinion, anti-doping controls are useless and they really don’t prove anything. Regarding Nadal, those rumors are rumors even if everyone wonders the same question : how can you be so strong in Roland Garros and one month later, you are apparently unable to play ? That’s why it looks so suspicious, but we have no proof. Maybe he is really injured.
We have to admit all these breaks, such as Nadal and some others, are really intriguing…
That’s the purpose ! It should not be obvious ! Everyone makes sure it is not clear. The less you lie, the less you give explanations, better it is ! Let’s take Robin Soderling. He has won Bastad in 2011, and ever since that, he has not played tennis. Apparently he is really sick (officially he has mononucleosis) when I am certain he was unbeatable back then. We can’t deny how much it sounds dubious. He was at the peak of his career, and the day after, he suddenly says he can’t play tennis anymore… I really think it’s unbelievable.
What about the federations ? Are they implicated or not?
It is all part of the rumors. We think “Oh wait, it is weird.” There are plenty of strange things happening, and we have the feeling the best players have nothing. It’s like everywhere, there are always people you can buy ! I guess someone like Armstrong might have the resources and the knowledge to pay someone to know how to avoid getting caught. It’s a certain thing : with money, everything is affordable ! Now, there is always a way to slip through the net. That’s the way it works because everyone has a benefit to take from it : the federations, the athletes…
How did you deal, as a tennisplayer, with these issues to keep practising your sport and to make it your job ?
When I entered the top 100, I said in the medias that it was a scandal to see all these doped players, and I received a letter from the ATP threatening me “This is the last time you ever talk about this. You have no proof, you have nothing”. Finally, all players I’ve mentioned got controlled positive. All Argentineans. Rather than all this hypocrisy, I think it would be better to legalize the doping. When I say that, I hear I can’t say that because it’s not a good thing and it’s dangerous anyway. But after speaking with the doctors, we are not even sure these products are dangerous for our health. At that moment, each one, in all honesty, is ready to take the risk or is not. My brother and I have always been clean. We could have taken growth hormones, but we never did it. We thought it was not worthy. Maybe we should have…. Maybe we would have never been caught up… Maybe my brother would be 17 centimenters (6.69 inches) taller and he would have been in the top 10… Everyone has to make choices. Do we really want to be in the worldwide top at all cost or are we content to be just a very good athlete, it’s all personal?
That being said, how can we put an end to all this ? We have the feeling all these doping stories will never end…
It will never end for one reason : sports are entertainment and we always want more. If, after ten stages in the Tour de France, the cyclists are racing at 25km/h (15.53 mph) because they are exhausted, it won’t be alright. If after a five setter which lasted for five hours in the semi-finals, the player says he can’t even get up so he can’t take part in the final, then the entertainment is over. It will never end. Too much money, too much entertainment at stakes. But as a spectator, I don’t mind watching these athletes, even if I know they are doped. For me, Armstrong still remains a great champion… doped or not ! Same for the others. They fought, the efforts are still there…
Very interesting stuff