The disgraced cyclist made headlines today for finally admitting to various kinds of doping before and after his cancer diagnosis, saying he never doped again after his first retirement in 2005. Lance also discussed the ways in which doping was performed in cycling.
Tennis players have long been vocal about the doping control they are subjected to. They must provide a time and location for a possible test for every single day of the year twelve months in advance. Now the players are speaking about Lance Armstrong’s scandal… and here are some of their thoughts.
Julien Benneteau: ”A liar and a cheat for years. He has to pay.
I’m tested about 10-15 times a year. More controls. More blood testing, we don’t have much of that. We can’t be naive. No sport is sheltered from it. In tennis it’s not just physical. It’s technical and mental. But we still need to stay vigilant.”
Olivier Rochus: “After the Armstrong affair everyone realises that it is not because someone has not tested positive that he or she has never taken drugs.
I guess someone like Armstrong had the means and knowledge to pay a guy to know how not to get caught, with money you can buy everything.
There are ways to avoid the net. It works like this because there’s something for everyone. Therefore drug testing is worthless, in my opinion, as it proves nothing. Rather than all this hypocrisy, it would be better to legalise doping.”
Maria Sharapova: “I think it’s just a really sad story, sad for that sport itself. I’m happy that our sport is as clean as it can be and that we’re constantly tested. You know, we give whereabouts of where we are every single day of the year. Hopefully not on birthdays and Christmas Eve, that would be pretty tough.
Although they did show up on my birthday and I was very disappointed. They did a couple of years ago. I said, Unless you bring flowers, I’m okay with it. But they came empty handed.
So as long as we’re getting tested, whatever it takes, urine, blood, we’re all here to make the sport as clean as it can be.”
Novak Djokovic: “I mean, it would be ridiculous for him to decline and refuse all the charges because it has been proven. They have like a thousand proofs that he’s positive. I think it’s a disgrace for the sport to have an athlete like this.
He cheated the sport. He cheated many people around the world with his career, with his life story. I think they should take all his titles away because it’s not fair towards any sportsman, any athlete. It’s just not the way to be successful. So I think he should suffer for his lies all these years.
I lost a lot of faith in cycling. I used to watch it. All the big champions that were there, Marco Pantani, now Lance Armstrong. Yeah, I don’t want to say all. I really don’t know. There has been so much controversy about that sport.
I’m sure that there are many cyclists in the world who are training very hard and trying to not use any enhancing drugs for their competition.
But I think it’s not acceptable that they have physically so much races in short period of the time. I think basically every single day, day and a half, they have to go through 200 miles. Uphill, downhill in Giro D’Italia, Tour de France, that’s inhuman effort. As you can see, Lance Armstrong, many other big champions, had to use something to succeed.”