Still officially “provisionally suspended” for doping, Simona Halep is surprisingly featured on the US Open 2023 entry list! Reassuring us that we may well finally see the Romanian play a tournament are her recent training videos posted on social media.
The former world No.1 Halep’s process has been dragging on forever. Since October last year she’s been waiting to be judged. The WTA champion hasn’t competed since testing positive for roxadustat at the 2022 US Open. Even though she insisted that the prohibited substance found in her body was a result of a contamination event, the situation went from bad to worse when she got charged with an additional anti-doping breach, related to irregularities found in her Athlete Biological Passport (ABP).
In a statement released in late May, Halep expressed her frustration with the constantly postponed hearings:
Not allowing me to participate into any tournament for 8 months. Now I know that I will have missed the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon. Not to mention that I will have lost all my points and my ranking. Not only they are killing my reputation, but also me as a professional player, and I don’t even talk about the consequences on my mental health.
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The situation has finally likely changed for the better, although Halep is still listed as provisionally suspended on the website of the International Tennis Integrity Agency. In the last 24 hours, Halep posted a video of her playing tennis on hard courts and also training in the gym. The possibility of witnessing the two-time Grand Slam champion compete again in the US Open 2023 fuels excitement and anticipation.