Madrid, April 26 (IANS) Spanish tennis great Rafael Nadal has confirmed that he was going to sue former French sports minister Roselyne Bachelot for alleging he had used performance enhancing drugs.
The news on Monday came a day after Nadal won the Torneo del Godo in Barcelona for a ninth time to add to his win in Monte Carlo a week previously, reports Xinhua.
“I am making public the defamation lawsuit against Roselyne Bachelot that I have filed today April 25 before the Paris law courts. This legal proceeding was instigated after Bachelot made offensive remarks last March on Le Grand 8 program on French channel D8,” Nadal said in the statement.
Bachelot had said in the wake of Maria Sharapova’s positive in this year’s Australian Open that Nadal’s 12 month absence through injury in 2012 was “without doubt due to a positive (drug test). When you see a tennis player who stops playing for long months, it is because he has tested positive and because they are covering it up”.
Nadal defended himself from the accusation, saying he was going to take legal advice because he was fed up of doping accusations, adding on Monday that he intended to “not only to defend my integrity and my image as an athlete but also the values I have defended all my career.”
He also said that if he won the case he would not keep the damages for himself, but give them to a French based charity.