Djokovic slams timing of doping control request
MALAGA: Novak Djokovic was furious after being asked to undergo a dope test shortly before Serbia’s Davis Cup win over Great Britain, although the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) said on Saturday it was standard practice.Djokovic revealed his anger at being asked before the 2-0 win on Thursday which sent Serbia into the Davis Cup semi-finals, rather than after.
Djokovic said officials asked for samples 90 minutes before his 6-4, 6-4 win over Cameron Norrie.
“I didn’t believe that they could make such a decision, in 20 and more years of my career, it never happened to me that an hour-and-a-half before the match, I needed to go for doping control,” he said. “I have my own routine — I don’t need that distraction, to have my urine and blood taken, to think about whether I can give urine at that moment.”
Djokovic said he had no problem with being tested “a hundred times” but not before the match.
However, the ITIA said the whole team was subject to testing and it was a standard approach.
“Due to the format of team competitions, teams may be notified that they have been selected for testing before matches begin and then provide samples when they are ready,” ITIA said. “Between notification and providing the sample, they are chaperoned by a member of the anti-doping team.”
Published in Dawn, November 26th, 2023