After his 14th coronation at Roland-Garros, Rafael Nadal had created controversy by confiding that he had played under painkiller injections for most of the tournament. A statement that caused a lot of reaction, Nadal’s detractors accusing him in particular of doping. The World Anti-Doping Agency has entered the case…
The injections received by Rafael Nadal during Roland Garros to calm his pain in his left foot continue to be debated! After being crowned a 14th time in the French tournament, the Mallorcan had sparked controversy: “ I was able to play during these two weeks, because I have no feeling on my foot because my doctor was able to do anesthetic injections on the nerves and remove the feeling on my foot but at the same time it is a bigger risk of playing like this. Thanks to that I had a chance here now so I did it and I can be happier and I can’t thank my doctor enough for everything he has done throughout my tennis career helping me every day but it is obvious that I want to continue tennis in better conditions “. A statement that went wrong with some people, especially in the world of cycling where Thibaut Pinot and especially William Martin stepped up to the plate after the revelations of Rafael Nadal : “ What Nadal did would have been impossible on the bike, and I find that normal. If we are sick or injured, we don’t run, we don’t compete, that seems like common sense to me. For several reasons. First of all, for the health of the athletes. In the long term I’m not sure it will do Nadal’s ankle any good. And in addition, drugs and even more infiltrations do not only have a healing effect, it can certainly have effects on performance or be diverted to improve performance, so it seems very limited to me. […] If a cyclist does the same thing, it’s already forbidden, but even if it weren’t, everyone would fall on him calling him doped because there is such a cultural background, such shots attached to the bike. While people praise Nadal for being able to go this far in pain. I believe that Zlatan Ibrahimovic also spoke about his knee infiltrations. They pass for heroes because they go far in pain, but in fact, they use substances to go far in pain and again, it’s very borderline declared the runner of the Cofidis.
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— Roland Garros (@rolandgarros) June 5, 2022
“Anesthetic injections are not prohibited”
At the microphone of RTS, Olivier Niggli, Director General of the World Anti-Doping Agency, spoke on this burning subject: “If a product is on the list of prohibited products, it has an effect on performance, it is bad for your health, and it is contrary to sports ethics. Anesthetic injections are not prohibited. It is not an oversight. The question arose. It has been discussed. They’re not on the list because they don’t improve performance and are basically not bad. Is this good medical practice? Is it acceptable for a top athlete to inject himself before a match? It is a debate between doctors and a debate on medical ethics. Rafael Nadal won 13 titles at Roland‐Garros without a prick, it was probably not thanks to the pricks that he won the 14th.An answer which has the merit of being clear. As a reminder, Nadal recently had treatment in Spain to relieve his pain.