Roger Federer's recent criticism of drug testing in tennis was spot on, and should spark a change in the way the sport handles this issue.
Here is what the 17-time Grand Slam champion told the media (via The Telegraph):
“I feel I am being tested less now than six or seven years ago,” said Federer, who will open his Barclays ATP World Tour Finals campaign on Tuesday afternoon against Janko Tipsarevic, of Serbia.
“Whatever number it is, I do not think it is enough,” Federer said. “I think they should up it a little bit, or a lot. It is vital that the sport stays clean. We have had a good history in terms of that and we want to ensure it stays that way.”
Drug testing has become an important part of every sport, but some don't take it as seriously as they should.
There are no excuses for any sport if it fails to catch cheaters who use performance-enhancing drugs to gain an advantage over opponents who are clean.
Players may also decide to use PEDs to recover from injuries much faster than they would using the normal methods of rehabilitation.
If there's not a lot of testing, or the testing methods fail to produce accurate results, people who are cheating have no reason to be afraid of getting caught. This is when the sport is in real trouble.
Once you make players hesitant about cheating with PEDs, you have finally begun to make a difference in cleaning up the sport. Tennis certainly hasn't accomplished this goal yet.
Tennis has plenty of drug testing models to follow in the world of sports, including what Major League Baseball does in the United States, which has been effective in cleaning up the sport after PEDs became a huge issue in baseball going into this century.
It's time for tennis to take drug testing seriously, and ensure that the sport is not being damaged by athletes who are cheating.
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