(March 7, 2013) Tennis will introduce biological passports this year and increase the number of blood tests.
The Tennis Anti-Doping Programme Working Group, comprised of representatives of the ITF, ATP, WTA and the Grand Slam tournaments met on Tuesday as part of their regular review of the programme, and expressed unified support to implement an Athlete Biological Passport Programme from 2013. The Athlete Biological Passport provides an individual, electronic document for athletes in which profiles of biological markers of doping and results of doping tests are collated over a period of time that can be used to detect variances from an athlete’s established levels that might indicate doping.
“The implementation of the Athlete Biological Passport is an important step in the evolution of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme as it provides us with a great tool in the fight against doping in our sport,” said ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti in a statement released by the ITF. “We also hope to have increased support from the National Anti-Doping Agencies around the world who need to do their part if we are to win this battle and make our programme more effective. Our thanks to the Grand Slam tournaments, the ATP and WTA who have recognized the need to increase the investment of tennis in anti-doping and to the players who asked for more testing, especially blood testing, over the next few years.”
A number of players have advocated that the sport increase its anti-doping measures in the wake of many recent high profile doping scandals in sports.
A biological passport is an electronic document containing test results compiled over .time which can be used to see changes which might indicate doping.