Rusedski to wait before considering legal action

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The Independent Online

Greg Rusedski has continued to refuse to rule out the possibility of legal action over the positive nandrolone test which almost wrecked his career.

Greg Rusedski has continued to refuse to rule out the possibility of legal action over the positive nandrolone test which almost wrecked his career.

Rusedski was cleared of culpability for the tainted sample by an independent tennis tribunal on Wednesday. And on his return to England yesterday morning after a short vacation, Rusedski said he would examine the verdict closely before deciding on his next course of action.

"I can't consider taking legal action at the moment - I have to sit down and read through everything," Rusedski said. "I'm just really pleased that we've got the verdict we said all along we were going to get."

Rusedski may believe he has a strong case for damages against the Association of Tennis Professionals, whose substances were deemed responsible for his positive test. But many sources, including the World Anti-Doping Agency, remain uncomfortable with the tribunal's decision. They believe that it is still to be proved that the ATP supplements concerned were the reason for both Rusedski's positive test and those of seven other tour players last year.

WADA is to issue a report on the seven previous positive tests in agreement with the ATP, while Rusedski attempts to put his life back in order and improve on a world ranking which has slipped to 121.

"I don't know when I will be back to a normal life but this experience will hopefully make me stronger," he said. "I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. I'm a very happy man today. It's a great relief and I'm obviously thrilled. It's been a complete roller-coaster.

"I can't wait to get on that Centre Court in front of the British public and all the people who have supported me and just give them something back and try really hard to do as well as I can. From day one I said that I was innocent and I've proved that I am innocent and I just want to get back to doing what I was doing before."

Speaking in Indian Wells, the former world No 1 Lleyton Hewitt urged the ATP to sort out the sport, saying he had little faith in their anti-doping measures.

"I'd like to think tennis is clean but I can't say 100 per cent," the Australian said. "Sometimes you are just not sure. I know I'm 100 per cent clean [but] sometimes there have been guys who look stronger in the fifth set than they are in the first. You have to wonder about that."

Hewitt, who is defending his title at Indian Wells, said players could not just depend on water to replace lost fluids.

"When you're on court and the [ATP] trainer gives you a drink, you have to be able to trust them," he said. "Players can't be expected to go out there and drink water all the time. When we are playing in heat like this or in slams with five sets, you need something that is going to keep your fluids up and I don't think water is going to do that."

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