Simona Halep, the Romanian tennis star, has been provisionally suspended for doping, the International Tennis Integrity Agency has confirmed. “Simona Halep, 31-year-old Romanian tennis player has been provisionally suspended under Article 7.12.1 of the 2022 Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP),” ITIA said in a statement. 

Also Read | Simona Halep, Romanian tennis star, provisionally suspended for doping

Following the suspension, Halep released a statement on Twitter where she said: “Today begins the hardest match of my life: a fight for the truth. I have tested positive for a substance called Roxadustat in an extremely low quantity, which came as the biggest shock of my life.” 

“Throughout my whole career, the idea of cheating never even crossed my mind once, as it is totally against the values I have been educated with. Facing such an unfair situation. I feel completely confused and betrayed,” her statement read.

Also read: How much money is Nick Kyrgios losing in fines and where does it go?

Who is Simona Halep? 

Simona Halep is a tennis player from Romania whose stature and playing style have frequently been compared to Justine Henin’s. Halep has become one of the most prominent players of this decade despite standing at only 5’6″, which is quite short compared to other players. Halep is frequently characterised as an aggressive counterpuncher who manipulates rallies in her favour using movement and racquet head speed.

Halep was born in the Romanian city of Constanta, and in 2007 she relocated to Bucharest. In his peak, her father Stere Halep played professional football for AS Sageata Stejaru in Romania. Growing up, Halep looked up to Justine Henin, which possibly explains why their playing philosophies are similar.

Also read: July 4: Joey Chestnut marks 15th win at Nathan’s hot dog eating competition

Halep was a well-known child from the start, and her victory at the 2008 Roland Garros juvenile tournament appeared to be proof of her future success. She made a significant sacrifice for herself the next year when she underwent breast reduction surgery to enhance her court mobility.