Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep has been provisionally suspended
from tennis after testing positive for a banned substance.
The substance found in her body is roxadustat, a substance classified as an EPO by
the World Anti-Doping Agency.
The drug itself improves blood oxygenation. Halep exercised her right to request a
counter-analysis, which has already been performed.
Halep, 31, is the current No.9 in the WTA rankings and has been ranked No.1 in the
world in the past.
She has won 24 WTA titles. Among them, Roland Garros in 2018, and Wimbledon in
2019 and the WTA Finals in 2014.
She also was victorious in the Mutua Madrid Open she won in 2016 and 2017.
The sample with the banned substance was taken at the most recent US Open.
This is the biggest doping shock in women’s tennis since Maria Sharapova was found
with meldonium in her system in 2016.
Halep has been working with Patrick Mouratoglou as a coach in recent times, and
Mouratoglou, who had previously worked with Serena Williams before her
In the 2022 season, Halep had won the WTA 1000 in Toronto and the WTA 250 in
Following the announcement of her test result, Simona Halep has issued a statement
through social media, noting that she starts “the hardest match” of her life, to prove
the “truth”, and that the amount of the chemical detected in her system was an
‘extremely small dose.
“It’s not for the titles or the money, but for the love affair with tennis that I have
maintained for 25 years,” she concluded in a statement.