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Brooksby has doping ban reduced, can return in March

Jenson Brooksby Jenson Brooksby - The Canadian Press

American tennis player Jenson Brooksby's suspension for missing three doping tests will end on March 3, 10 months earlier than the original date, the International Tennis Integrity Agency said Thursday.

The ITIA said it reached an agreement with Brooksby to reduce the ban from 18 months to 13 and backdate it to when the third missed test allegedly happened.

“It gives me tremendous joy, and relief, that I can get back to doing what I love,” said the 23-year-old Brooksby, who is from California and now is based in Texas and has been as high as No. 33 in the ATP rankings. “The last 13 months have been exhausting, and a nightmare I don’t wish on anyone.”

The ITIA said in October that Brooksby was banned until January 2025 after an independent tribunal determined he missed three drug tests in the span of a year. The ITIA said Brooksby accepted that his “whereabouts failures” for two of the missed tests “were valid” and the tribunal found his degree of fault for the other test “was high.”

Under antidoping rules, athletes can be penalized without a positive test if they have three “whereabout failures” within 12 months.

The agreement to cut the suspension came after “new information relating to the circumstances giving rise to the missed tests" was submitted as part of Brooksby's appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland, the ITIA said Thursday. That appeal has now been dropped.

The ITIA added that it determined, in consultation with the World Anti-Doping Agency, that Brooksby's “degree of fault ... should be reassessed.”

Brooksby's most recent match on tour came at the Australian Open in January 2023, when he eliminated No. 2 seed Casper Ruud in the second round. Shortly after that tournament, Brooksby split from his longtime coach, Joseph Gilbert.

The American then was sidelined while having two operations for dislocated wrist tendons: on his left arm in March, and on his right in May.

“Since Australia, it’s, for sure, been the toughest part of my life, having to deal with so many different issues. The wrists were a struggle. Then at the same time, leaving my coach who I had been with since I was 7 years old. But professionally and personally, that was the right thing to do,” Brooksby told The Associated Press last year. “And there is also the doping thing, all within this period. Personal issues, too. I’m really just looking forward to being back on the court and the tour and putting all of it behind me.”


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