When I heard last month that Frenchman Richard Gasquet had been suspended after testing positive for cocaine I was more than a little shocked. He is one of the games nice guys which, admittedly, doesn’t mean he wouldn’t use cocaine but he is a professional sportsman who at the age of 23 has already won prize money of almost £3million. His body is vital for his career so why would he abuse it?
Unfortunately we see so many young men and women who, due to their sporting ability suddenly find themselves in a world that their immature minds aren’t ready for. Money to burn and fans telling them that they are God’s gift can often be a bad combination.
But that just didn’t fit my view of this guy. However, he was suspended so surely there was something in it? A tribunal has accepted his explanation that while he was in a nightclub in Miami he kissed a girl and that was how the drug entered his system. I heard this on the radio earlier this evening and my first reaction was that it sounded ridiculous but having read a little more detail on the net it seems that the amount of cocaine in his sample was about the size of a grain of salt.
I have enjoyed watching him play many times. A ban would have done severe damage to his career. I for one hope that the tennis world allow him to move on from this and we can all continue to take pleasure in watching a gifted sportsman do what he does best.