• ATP Tour

Djokovic: Banned Troicki is innocent

ESPN staff
August 7, 2013
Viktor Troicki, left, is unlikely to be available for Serbia's Davis Cup semi-final against Canada © Getty Images

Novak Djokovic pledged his support for banned compatriot Viktor Troicki, insisting his Serbian Davis Cup team-mate is "innocent" of any doping violation.

World No. 1 Djokovic returned to action for the first time since his Wimbledon final defeat by Andy Murray, making light work of Florian Mayer with a 55-minute 6-2 6-1 victory at the Rogers Cup in Montreal.

Asked after the match about his thoughts on Troicki's suspension - the 27-year-old was handed an 18-month ban for refusing to provide a blood sample at the Monte Carlo Masters on the grounds that he was unwell - Djokovic said he expected his countryman to be back in action sooner rather than later.

"We're not sure what's going to happen with Viktor," Djokovic said, adding he doubted Troicki would be back in time for Serbia's Davis Cup semi-final clash against Serbia in September.

"We all give him big support because he's definitely innocent. Hopefully he is going to be able to be on the court very soon."

Troicki has denied any wrongdoing, insisting he was assured by the doping officer that he could skip the blood test after providing a urine sample. He returned the next day to give blood. The ITF dismissed his defence, leaving Troicki to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Rafael Nadal teamed up with compatriot Pablo Andujar to beat fellow Spaniards David Ferrer and Feliciano Lopez 6-7 6-1 12-10 in the first round of the men's doubles in Montreal. It was Nadal's first competitive outing since his shock Wimbledon exit nearly two months ago. He will face Canadian wildcard Jesse Levine in the second round of the singles draw.

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