Former AFLD Official Recalls Rafael Nadal’s Doping Test, Says It Was a ‘Crime of Lese Majesty’

Published 04/09/2021, 10:44 PM EDT
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – APRIL 13: Rafael Nadal of Spain in a practice session as uncle and coach Toni Nadal watches on during day two of the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters tennis at the Monte-Carlo Sporting Club on April 13, 2015 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)


Rafael Nadal is undoubtedly one of the humblest athletes in the world. However, when challenged over his integrity, he does not tend to sit quietly. And for many years on the men’s tour, his uncle and ex-coach Toni Nadal fought his battles alongside him.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

To explain, Jean-Pierre Verdy, former director of French Anti-Doping Agency (ALFD), unveiled a case of 2009 concerning the Spaniard. In the interview, he recalled the incident when they had upheld Rafa in his hotel room in Bercy for his blood sample for a doping test.

DIVE DEEPER

What Will Be the Impact on the ATP and WTA Tour After French Open Postponement?

about 1 month ago

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Verdy shares how Toni and Rafael Nadal reacted at the scene in Bercy

Rafael Nadal, 34, has won a staggering 13 French Open titles, also an all-time record. However, in 2009, he was a young kid who had championed the Roland Garros four times in a row (2005-2008). At that time, such a feat might have been considered inhumane.

Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates victory with the trophy alongside coach Toni Nadal after the men’s singles final against Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland on day fifteen of the French Open at Roland Garros on June 11, 2017, in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

But over the years, the Spaniard proved himself time and again with his formidable dominance on clay. Thus, Verdy now referred to the incident as ‘a crime of lese majesty’. It is a French phrase for a wrongful act against the royal majesty. Here’s what he said happened.

He said, “When we wanted to control him in his hotel room in Bercy in 2009, it had gone badly. His uncle Tony was so angry that the phlebotomist must have given it to me on the phone.” (All quotes are translated from French to English via Google Translate).

Toni and Rafa Nadal have always believed in working hard to build a career in the sport so dear to them. For the same reason, they both are reputed and renowned for the humility and undying passion for tennis. Therefore, it is no surprise that Uncle Toni had ruffled feathers of the director of the ALFD then.

DIVE DEEPER

“Pumped Up”: Uncle Toni Believes Rafael Nadal Will Have an Amazing Clay-Court Season

about 1 month ago

Where will Nadal play next in 2021?

After stepping down as the head coach for Team Rafa in 2017, Toni Nadal has taken up the mentorship of Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime. The new team will go up against the Spaniard at the Monte-Carlo Masters, starting April 11, 2021.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – APRIL 19: Rafael Nadal of Spain plays a forehand against Guido Pella of Argentinean their quarter-final match during day six of the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters at Monte-Carlo Country Club on April 19, 2019, in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

As per the draw, Felix would not face the winner of 11 Monte-Carlo until the later stage of the event. Moreover, the field is equally challenging for both the top seeds, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.

Above all, two sensational weeks of clay tennis is up for grabs for all tennis fans. Who do you think will win the Monte-Carlo title this year?

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

DIVE DEEPER

Novak Djokovic, Fabio Fognini and Others: Who Can Stop Rafael Nadal at Monte Carlo 2021?

about 1 month ago

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Purav Joshi

670 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT