By Nick Georgandis
While he contends that his failed drug test is a misunderstanding, the fact remains that Croatia's Marin Cilic will be suspended by the ITF until February 2014.
Cilic is the third former Top 10 player to be suspended for failing a drug test, following Guillermo Coria (2001, 7-month suspension) and Petr Korda (1999, 12-month suspension).
The embarrassment and public humiliation aside, Cilic's main blow is the lack of points and the stripping of his prize money. In his eight-year career, which began in 2005, he has earned just over $6 million in prize money, and has notched at least $1 million in each of the past three seasons.
Cilic's ATP biography page has already erased all of his results from the last three months.
Ranked as high as No. 11 in May of 2013, Cilic is now 35th in the rankings. He will fall out of the Top 50 by the end of this year, and by Feb. 1, 2014, he will likely be in the mid-60s. Missing the Australian Open entirely will make it very tough for Cilic to get back into the Top 15 anytime in 2014.