• ATP Tour

Troicki proclaims innocence, vows to appeal ban

ESPN staff
July 26, 2013

Viktor Troicki has vowed to appeal against his 18-month ban for failing to provide a blood sample for a drugs test.

Troicki, currently the world No. 53, was given the ban by the International Tennis Federation after failing to provide blood following his first round match at the recent Monte Carlo Masters.

However, the Serbian insists that he was explicitly told by an ITF official that it would not be a problem if skipped the blood test, having complained to her of feeling unwell.

"For sure [I will be appealing]," Troicki said. "I put my trust in the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, I really hope they will look for the truth and find it, which is only one."

He added: "The doctor in charge of the testing told me that I looked very pale and ill, and that I could skip the test if I wrote an explanation letter to ITF about it. She dictated the letter to me and let me go without giving blood. She was very helpful and understanding."

Troicki said that he returned the next day to provide a sample, with all tests coming back negative. He is adamant the fault lies with the erroneous information of the doping official, although the ITF tribunal ultimately decided to back the doctor's account over his.

Troicki suggested that she is under pressure not to admit to her mistake.

"I am destroyed and exhausted," Troicki said. "The whole period I have been thinking only about this issue. And it is not over yet, so I can't really describe it.

"I am not even angry with the doctor. I believe that maybe she was told by her organisation that she made a big mistake letting me go she backed up and tried to save her job."

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