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Grand Slams to Pledge More Funds Against Doping

The four Majors are expected to announce an increase in funding of drug testing in the wake of recent criticism of current testing in the sport.

By Erik Gudris

Andy Murray (February 26th, 2013) -- The four Grand Slam tournaments are expected to increase their funding of drug testing as a response to increased criticism on the sport's overall efforts to fight doping.

According to the Daily Mail UK, organizers of the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open will meet in New York next month to agree upon a funding increase of possibly up to $100,000 each per event. The money would go to increasing drug testing, especially outside of organized tournaments.

The ITF recently released figures on drug testing for 2011 with only 10 per cent of the nearly 2,200 tests carried out away from tournaments.

High profile stars such as Roger Federer and Andy Murray have called for increased testing measures in order to prevent players from gaining an unfair advantage and to avoid the embarrassment that pro cycling continues to deal with it in the wake of the Lance Armstrong scandal.

Increased use of blood testing and implementation of biological passports for players are among the options being considered this year. But no official timetable has been set by either the ITF or the ATP or WTA tours for when new testing would start.

Murray recently advocated increased spending on drug testing, even if it meant cutting into player's prize money. "If it means taking some of the money out of the players' earnings then that's what we have to do because not just tennis (but) all sports need to look very closely at this stuff," said Murray.

(Photo Credit: Mark Peterson/Corleve)


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