WADA methods tedious but possible, says Leander Paes

India tennis ace Leander Paes reckons Dhoni & Co can cope with WADA's anti-doping methods despite the procedure being tedious.

updated: August 04, 2009 11:55 IST
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New Delhi:

India tennis ace Leander Paes reckons Dhoni & Co can cope with WADA's anti-doping methods despite the procedure being tedious.

The Indian cricket team have expressed unhappiness over anti-doping methods they have to adopt as per World Anti Doping Agency regulations. However, Leander Paes, India's most capped Davis Cupper and reigning French Open doubles and US Open mixed doubles champion, believes not complying is no solution to the problem.

"We athletes should realise that WADA is doing all this for the good of sport. So, directly contradicting the regulations is not the right thing to do. An amicable solution has to be the way ahead. Players should understand where WADA is coming from and at the same time, WADA too could try and make the whole process a bit more simpler and less inconvenient for us sportsmen," Paes told MiD DAY.

Paes admitted the WADA procedure is a bit too tedious given a sportsperson's unpredictable schedule. One of WADA's clauses requires players to disclose their whereabouts at all times for random dope testing something Paes, being among the top five doubles players in the world, has been religiously following as per ATP Tour rules for quite some time now.

"Let alone the occurrence of any kind of emergency, but even in a normal situation, it's not always possible to know your whereabouts as a sportsman at any given date," Paes said as he went on to explain the process.

"As is the norm, I have been letting WADA know where I'm going to be every day of the year and I provide them one hour in the day when they can come and conduct a dope test on me. This is done on a quarterly basis where I'm expected to fill the details online on the WADA website. If there is any last-minute change in schedule, I have to get back online and make the necessary changes," he said.

However, the pure unpredictability of a professional sportsman's schedule can land the player in deep trouble.

Paes illustrated a typical example of how an athlete could misinform the authorities and unknowingly attract their ire. "Suppose, I'm filling details of my whereabouts for September 13, which is the final of the US Open this year. I would love to be in the final, so I will inform WADA that I should be in New York on that day.

However, if I lose earlier in the tournament and decide to come back to India to be with my family, my schedule will change. Hence, information given earlier by me becomes inaccurate.

"And if WADA does not find me at the place I had originally mentioned, I will be served a warning. Three such warnings lead to a ban. One of the world's No 1 doubles tennis players Bob Bryan finds himself on two warnings," said Paes.