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Where There is Science There is Fire

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Where There is Science There is Fire Empty Where There is Science There is Fire

Post by legendkillar on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:46 pm

If people haven't read the LA report which was released by the USDA, then as a fan of sport it is a must.

This report will send shockwaves through the sporting world. It is not just associating this case with cycling, but looking how far deception can really travel.

Lance Armstrong had it all. The legacy. His foundation which helped cancer sufferers like him. All that thrown away. His legacy is now one of a ruthless cheat who had one goal and one goal only. To win at all costs. Yes his story in overcoming cancer is one of astonishment. One I respect. His legacy in sport however is one I will never ever respect. He calls it a witch hunt, yet the evidence stacks heavily against him.

How am I linking this to tennis? Well discussion this morning has certainly yielded some interesting viewpoints.

By far the most associated name with doping in tennis is Rafael Nadal. Now why some might ask? There is the breath-taking speed and stamina and also the power in his shotmaking. Questionable has been the PRP which has aided him in recovery from his knee injuries. Physique changes. There are the drugs/treatments out there which are accessible to him and others as well. There is his well documented 'Hoffa's' syndrome and yet despite Uncle Toni commenting years back he only thought Nadal would manage 2 years on the ATP circuit and yet he is 8 years later and 11 Slams to his name.

But let's not just finger Nadal because he isn't the only player who we can cast suspicions about.

Look at the old guard in the top 10. Federer and Ferrer. Federer I hear you ask. Yes may not be built in a more muscular mould, but the limits of his performances and consistency does bring into question could he have doped to keep a little more juice in the tank? A guy who seemingly in his 30's re-discovering some magic form. He has never had a long standing period off from the game. I recall a back injury at Halle in 2011. Could he be using substances to recover from injuries at a faster rate? Ferrer a guy who is playing the tennis of his life in his 30's. A guy who only made the top 50 in his late 20's and has gone on to better ranking as time has gone by. Could he be doping because of his tenacity and stamina?

Let's look at others. Djokovic. Suffers Asthma. Had a Septoplasty operation. Respiratory problems seemed to be the one thing that could prevent him reaching the very top. However, through it all he did make it to the top of the game. 2011 was an unforgettable season. There was the 'Egg Chamber' story. Had Djokovic traded in his moral code to join the others at the top of the game?

Andy Murray. A guy who professed after many Slam final defeats "I need to get fitter" despite being teatotal could he be doping? This is a guy who year by year was physically showing the benefits of a brutal training regime. He does boast of a 6,000 calorie a day diet. This requires an extremely high metabolism. Again there are substances that can increase metabolism?

Berdych and Tipsarevic. Again players that have come from nowhere and now reside in the top 10 of the world. Seemingly with nothing radically different about their games apart from increased stamina.

Now this shouldn't be doom and gloom. Yes there have been dietry advances and also new fitness regimes which command the upmost discipline. Also changes in sport technology and changes in conditions have dictated the position the game finds itself in Another question would rage can tennis players bodies really survive on extensive cardiovascular exercise for nearly 11 months a year including the training? Before our eyes we do see what we deem 'unbelivable' on the court. Is this really the work of supremely talented athletes? Or is there the added pop which is coming from a more 'sinister' source?

We have the science in place nowadays. LA has shown the ease in which someone can conceal wrong doing. Are what tennis players are producing nowadays from a bottle or just from their DNA?

Which side do you fall on?

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:50 pm

I say, where there is a will, there's a way.

At the moment, noone is prepared to stand up to big bucks.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:52 pm

Having said that, I hope that LA case encourages people and opens the floodgates.
It's got to stop or professional sport will die in the next decade.

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Post by legendkillar on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:54 pm

Well I hope it does too. It requires a massive clean up as seen with the LA case.

WADA need to grow some grapefruits and tackle it head on. They came across cheap in that LA report.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:59 pm

legendkillar wrote:Well I hope it does too. It requires a massive clean up as seen with the LA case.

WADA need to grow some grapefruits and tackle it head on. They came across cheap in that LA report.

The key wild be to replace people who obviously create a bottleneck there.
Look at what damage Blatter has done to football, yet he seems untouchable, I wonder why. Same was the case with that Spaniard Samaran, the guy literally took his armchair to the grave.

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Post by legendkillar on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:03 pm

Blatter is total c u next tuesday. The repulses me to the core. His utter arrogance is offensive.

Look at Cricket though. A bowler recently tested positive for a banned substance and he was banned for 8 weeks!! Utterly pathetic.

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Post by Tenez on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:08 pm

I like it! Only here on OTF!!!! Winking

I gave you my view (and facts) about age/stamina though. You are ridding the wrong horse there (leaving Fed aside).

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Post by Tenez on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:10 pm

noleisthebest wrote:Having said that, I hope that LA case encourages people and opens the floodgates.
It's got to stop or professional sport will die in the next decade.

Sport has already died for me. I skipped the olympics and am following tennis cause there is a great artist at the moment. I am also picking up on a few exploits but very few.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:11 pm

There is a lot of politics behind the scenes. You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours kind of thing.
Whistle blowers are rare. Especially successful ones.

I look forward to seeing what happens with this Fuentes case in January.
It could take a long time, that's the only problem.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:14 pm

Tenez wrote:
noleisthebest wrote:Having said that, I hope that LA case encourages people and opens the floodgates.
It's got to stop or professional sport will die in the next decade.

Sport has already died for me. I skipped the olympics and am following tennis cause there is a great artist at the moment. I am also picking up on a few exploits but very few.

I've been skipping the olympics for ages. The noose is tight around the neck, but it's still possible to breathe while watching tennis.

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Post by legendkillar on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:14 pm

Well I think that wear and tear should be ravaging these players bodies into their 30's given the brutal strains of tennis. Winking

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Post by legendkillar on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:17 pm

I haven't sat through the Olympics.

Despite that bullcrap pledge, someone always gets caught cheating.

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Post by Tenez on Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:53 pm

legendkillar wrote:Well I think that wear and tear should be ravaging these players bodies into their 30's given the brutal strains of tennis. Winking

Yes. It is violent. And that's why they typically don;t last long. Stopping at 34 is very young when you think about it. Remember Ken Rosewall, Connors and Pancho playing and doing so well in their 40s. Federer has been able to play with minimum sweat so I can expect him to ok.

But even today we saw how rusty he was at the beginning of the match. He was stretching his legs right in the middle of the first set...something he hasn't accustomed us to.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:38 pm

Latest in LA case, amnesty?!:


"We’ve been here before haven’t we? In 1998 when the sport of cycling was rocked by the transgressions of the Festina affair we held our breath as we waited on a dawn of new cycling to provide a hope for a clean sport.

It never materialised. Instead we were fed lies upon lies as a breakthrough for clean cycling was plugged by a governing body and a generation of athletes who chose to shy away from tackling the issue of doping.

A complex web of deception and conspiracy manifested itself until those that chose to stay pure and ride clean were ostracised from the sport. Victims included the French rider Christophe Bassons, who was bullied into retirement; and Betsy Andreu, an outspoken advocate for clean cycling, who was condemned and vilified.
"The 1,000 pages of evidence make for sobering reading"
Cycling was brought back to point where the doping culture and Omerta’s rule of silence governed.
Since then there have been minor breakthroughs. In 2006 Operacion Puerto allowed us to scratch the surface of one of the largest doping rings ever uncovered, and the EPO CERA cases of 2008 raised hope that cycling was on the right path.
In conjunction the UCI’s biological passport narrowed the opportunities for cheats, while WADA has campaigned tirelessly on a global stage.

But now cycling finds itself at another cross-road – at another Festina moment.

Yesterday’s damning report of Lance Armstrong and the US Postal Service team brought to light a team that was wrapped in doping practices, from the use and attempted use of prohibited substances; the possession of prohibited substances, drug trafficking, and assisting, encouraging, aiding, abetting, covering up and other complicity involving one or moreanti-doping rule violations.
A long list.
"It’s unlikely - despite Armstrong’s choice not to fight USADA’s charges - that the American will confess"
Amongst the evidence, 26 testimonies - including 11 from former teammates of Armstrong - all of whom were prepared to swear on oath about their own crimes and that of their team leader.

The 1,000 pages of evidence make for sobering reading, and the confessions of riders whofor so long proclaimed themselves innocent echo and resonate.
It’s unlikely - despite Armstrong’s choice not to fight USADA’s charges - that the American will confess.

As David Walsh told Cyclingnews on Thursday, “it isn’t simply a case of saying I doped. Then people would ask, Lance were you the kingpin and did you coerce others to dope?”So where does cycling gofrom here? Lining up the peloton from the 1999 Tour de France in order to note 196 confessions may be futile, such was the degree of cheating at the time, however an amnesty would present cycling with the opportunity it so dearly deserves and craves.

Yet any amnesty shouldn’t just be engineered around athletes. The governing body, first and foremost, must address any failings they made during Armstrong’s era. Only then can cycling finally move forward."

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Post by Tenez on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:11 pm

noleisthebest wrote:, Yet any amnesty shouldn’t just be engineered around athletes. The governing body, first and foremost, must address any failings they made during Armstrong’s era. Only then can cycling finally move forward."
I think the new ATP has a chance to get things in control as he can always claim it was not in his hands before.

I do think the UCI people should be sacked too. Sure they were under heavy pressure from the sponsors but sport is sport and no way it shoudl turn into a circus show.

It's very clear that they could have made a champion of the other racers as well.

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Post by noleisthebest on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:33 pm

Idealistic or not, I still hope tennis can be brought under control.
At it's heart, it's a game, not an endurance race like cycling, so it can be controlled via equipment, and speeding up of playing conditions, not too much, just a bit to eliminate the need for doping which the slow conditions are thriving ground for.

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Post by Tenez on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:39 pm

noleisthebest wrote:Idealistic or not, I still hope tennis can be brought under control.
At it's heart, it's a game, not an endurance race like cycling
It's in a away as physical as cycling. In cycling you can always hide in the peloton and be sucked in by the large group to the finishing line. In tennis you have no-one to ride behind. The thing is in tennis the "edge" that enables a player to hit winners can go away pretty quickly which forces him to play safer and therefore run more.

In that respect it's a funny game.

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