Richard Gasquet, a semi-finalist at the 2007 Wimbledon Championships and Andy Murray's opponent in the fourth round of last summer's grass-court grand slam, has tested positive for cocaine, the French sports newspaper L'Equipe were reporting on Saturday night.
The report on L'Equipe's website said that Gasquet, a 22-year-old Frenchman currently ranked No 23 in the world, tested positive for traces of the banned substance after giving a urine sample at this season's tournament in Miami, having withdrawn from his opening match against Spain's Albert Montanes because of a shoulder injury. It also suggested that Gasquet could be facing a two-year ban if the B sample also comes back positive.
Martina Hingis, the former women's world No 1 and Wimbledon champion, was banned for two years after a sample she gave during the 2007 Wimbledon fortnight was shown to contain traces of cocaine. According to L'Equipe's report, Gasquet and his management company had not responded.
Gasquet has played two tournaments since Miami, reaching the second round of the clay-court tournament in Barcelona and the third round in Rome.
Ever since Gasquet was photographed aged nine years old on the front cover of a French tennis magazine, he has been marked out as a special talent, and there is no doubt that he has extraordinary ability. And yet, for all that, he has never had the lust for competition that is needed to win a grand slam.
These days, he is a long way from being the French No 1, as he is currently ranked as the fourth best from his country, behind Gilles Simon, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and Gael Monfils.
During last summer's Wimbledon, Gasquet was leading Murray by two sets to love, but the Briton came through to win in five sets and reach his first grand slam quarter-final.
Richard Gasquet 'tests positive' for cocaineRichard Gasquet, a semi-finalist at the 2007 Wimbledon Championships and Andy Murray's opponent in the fourth round of last summer's grass-court grand slam, has tested positive for cocaine, the French sport