LONDON, September 23, 2022 (ITIA Press Release)
The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) has confirmed that a Russian tennis player has been banned from the sport for nine months after admitting a breach of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP) rules. Due to the player’s age, they are not being named.
The player was 14 years old and playing in only their second senior ITF tournament in January 2022 when they were selected for a random anti-doping test. The sample was sent to a WADA-accredited laboratory, which detected the presence of Meldonium in their A sample, later confirmed in the B sample. Meldonium is a metabolic modulator, prohibited under section S4 of the WADA Prohibited List.
Under the TADP, the player is categorised as a Protected Person, due to their age, and they were able to establish ‘No Significant Fault or Negligence’. The appropriate period of ineligibility was, therefore, between two years and no period of ineligibility, depending on the player’s degree of fault. Due to the player’s age, level and lack of access to Anti-Doping education, the sanction was set at nine months, backdated to the date of the player’s Provisional Suspension (5 March 2022).
This means that the player is ineligible to compete in or attend any tennis events authorised, organised or sanctioned by the governing bodies of the sport until 4 December 2022.
In light of the player’s age and lack of education, the ITIA will provide a one-to-one education session as part of their reinstatement, working with the International Tennis Federation’s safeguarding team to outline the rules and responsibilities of the sport’s integrity programmes for the player.