The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) today confirms that Italian tennis player Stefano Battaglino has been suspended from the sport for a period of four years by an independent tribunal following breaches of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP).
On 14 September 2022 at an M15 tournament in Morocco, 25-year-old Battaglino provided an in-competition urine sample, which was found to contain metabolites of clostebol. Clostebol – an anabolic androgenic steroid - is prohibited at all times under Section S1 of the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List. As a non-specified substance, an adverse analytical finding for clostebol carries a mandatory provisional suspension. As such, Battaglino has been provisionally suspended since February 2023.
Battaglino, who has a career-high ATP singles ranking of 760, requested a hearing before an independent tribunal convened by Sport Resolutions. The hearing was held remotely in October 2023. The player argued that his violation was unintentional and that his sanction should be further reduced on grounds of no fault or negligence or no significant fault or negligence.
The independent tribunal determined that Battaglino did not prove the source of the clostebol and therefore found that the anti-doping rule violations were intentional. As such, the player was not eligible for any reductions below the presumptive four-year sanction.
Time served under provisional suspension will be credited against the player’s period of ineligibility. Battaglino’s period of ineligibility therefore runs from 1 February 2023 until midnight of 31 January 2027. The player’s results from the date of the positive test are also to be disqualified, with forfeiture of ranking points and prize money.
During the sanction period, the player is prohibited from playing in, coaching at, or attending any tennis event authorised or sanctioned by the members of the ITIA (ATP, ITF, WTA, Australian Open, Roland Garros, Wimbledon and US Open) or any national association.
The ITIA is an independent body established by its members to promote, encourage, enhance and safeguard the integrity of professional tennis worldwide.
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Published 03 November 2023 14:30