The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has provisionally suspended French tennis star Richard Gasquet. This is in relation with the results of the urine samples Gasquet provided during the Miami Masters which showed traces of cocaine.
ITF’s anti-doping commission chairman Dr. Stuart Miller confirmed that the suspension started on Monday. The Frenchman is expected to appear before an anti-doping tribunal where he’s given a chance to defend himself.
According to the report first released by French sports site L’Equipe, there were traces of cocaine found on the urine sample provided by Gasquet at the Miami Masters tournament last March. The tennis pro pulled out of his first round match at that time due to a shoulder injury.
Players usually provide more than one sample for testing. The cocaine traces were reportedly found on the A sample. Gasquet said he’s been informed that the B sample also came out positive.
ITF spokesman Neil Robinson said that Gasquet’s suspension will last until the end of the hearing, which is yet to be scheduled within the timeframe of 60 days. Three independent experts will be flown in to preside over the hearing.
Gasquet, a former Wimbledon semifinalist, achieved a career high ranking of number 7 two years ago. He has since relinquished the post as France’s number one tennis pro to Gilles Simon, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Gael Monfils.
Check out his ATP profile HERE.