Federer calls for biological passports

by: Matt Cronin February 13, 2013

Roger Federer calls for the introduction of biological passports in tennis. Biological passports are electronic records of pro athletes where profiles of the biological markers of doping and results of doping tests are collated, and violations can sometimes be detected by noting variances from an athlete’s established levels, rather than just identifying illegal substances.

Cycling’s governing body introduced biological passports in 2008 and carried out more than 3,314 out-of-competition blood tests that year. The ITF carried out only 21 out-of-competition blood tests in 2011. The organization has said it does not have enough funding to do many more.

“A blood passport will be necessary as some substances can’t be discovered right now but might in the future, and that risk of discovery can chase cheaters away,” Federer told reporters in Rotterdam.  “But there also should be more blood tests and out-of-competition controls in tennis. I didn’t get tested on blood after the Australian Open and I told the responsible people over there that it was a big surprise for me. But there also will be more funding needed to make all the tests possible and the Grand Slam tournaments should help to finance that as it is in their best interest to keep the sport clean and credible."

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