‘Second Service’ tennis news: Simona Halep feels ‘confused and betrayed’ by provisional drugs suspension, Rafael Nadal celebrates sixth anniversary of his elite tennis academy
Looking back on the big tennis news in our exclusive ‘Second Service’… Simona Halep feels ‘confused and betrayed’ by doping suspension with Nadal celebrating the 6th anniversary of his Tennis Academy.
To start this tennis news roundup, Simona Halep says she will fight for the truth after revealing that she tested positive for a banned substance.
In September, Halep announced the end of her 2022 season after undergoing nose surgery to improve her breathing.
“Today begins the hardest match of my life: a fight for the truth,” she begins a statement on social media. “I have been notified that I have tested positive for a substance called Roxadustat in an extremely low quantity, which came as the biggest shock of my life.
In other tennis news, Rafael Nadal has seen his academy turn six this week as the institution continues to produce top talent. Among its alumni are US Open finalist Casper Ruud, as well as both junior US Open champions from 2022 in Spaniard Martin Landaluce and Alex Eala of The Phillippines.
The sports centre boasts world class facilities including 45 tennis courts, both hard and clay
Based in Manacor on the Spaniard’s home island of Mallorca, the Rafa Nadal Academy opened in October 2016. Roger Federer joined his great friend and rival Rafael Nadal in opening the academy.
Furthermore, Jack Draper has become the first British man to qualify for the Next Gen ATP Finals following his European Open campaign.
The 20-year-old began the season ranked 265th in the world and with just two tour wins to his name. Now ranked 48th, Draper boasts a 16-10 record after Antwerp. There he breezed past fellow youngster Jenson Brooksby 6-1, 6-2 before losing a tough contest with top seed Hubert Hurkacz.
To conclude, Dominic Thiem has defeated Hubert Hurkacz to secure the biggest ranking win yet of his tour comeback.
The former world number three recovered from a set down and saved three match points to defeat the world number 11 3-6, 7-6 (11-9), 7-6 (7-4). It means Thiem advances to a second tour semi-final in as many weeks.
“It’s very special,” Thiem said of winning the match having saved match points. “This victory especially is unbelievable because it’s a first victory over an almost top 10 guy in my comeback process.
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