Russian teenager banned from tennis for nine months following anti-doping breach
Nika Kecmanovic, the Russian teen banned for nine months by the International Tennis Federation for taking a prohibited substance, will have the chance to return to competition when the ATP resumes action later this month.
At the request of the World Anti-Doping Agency, tennis’s governing body released on Sunday a full report on the teenager’s failed drug test, which was made in December.
Kecmanovic, a right-hand-handed player, admitted taking a prohibited substance on the eve of a Davis Cup quarter-final last November and again in the final when he was given a two-year ban.
The 19-year-old, who is playing in the WTA Elite Trophy in New Haven as part of the team-building activities for the US Open, had originally been suspended on the basis of a positive test for the banned drug Nandrolone Maleate.
While it was his first positive serving as a pro, the second positive test prompted an additional three-month ban for the player.
The two violations were enough for the US Tennis Association to launch the official “doping” investigation this spring.
“I was doing everything to be successful in the tennis business, and I made a mistake,” Kecmanovic told the Associated Press in a phone interview. “It’s all my fault. The only thing I can do now is apologize to the tennis community and say I’m really sorry.”
Kecmanovic added: “The punishment is the same as it was before. The consequences of the positive test was what I’m going to deal with.”
He said he would be returning to competition to a select few events over the next two weeks, but added, “I hope I will be able to contribute to the team in the next months.”
The World Anti-Doping Agency says Kecmanovic violated its policy with his second positive test by taking the prohibited substance Nandrolone Maleate on the eve of a Davis Cup quarter-final against Argentina in November