Just three of the out-of-competition blood tests in 2011 were on female tennis players. ITF statistics on its web site show it didn’t test Serena Williams out of competition at all in 2010 and 2011, years she won the Australian Open and Wimbledon and lost a U.S. Open final.
The ITF did test Williams in-competition at least seven times in 2010 and between 1-3 times in-competition in 2011.
“I get tested a lot,” Williams said last month at the WTA Championships in Istanbul, Turkey. “For me, it’s a pretty intense system, and I know a lot of the players feel the same way.”
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency’s web site shows that before one test in the second quarter of this year, it hadn’t organized a test on the 15-time major winner since 2008.
Li Na, the 2011 French Open women’s singles winner from China, also was not tested out of competition by the ITF or WADA in 2011 or in 2010, but was tested in-competition.
Of the 642 tested tennis players, 510 were not tested out of competition at all in 2011 _ when athletes aren’t playing between events or in the offseason.
Cycling conducted 6,500 more tests than tennis on professional road racers last year and an average of nine tests per rider, compared to an average 3.4 tests per player in tennis.
By way of comparison, Canadian cyclist Ryder Hesjedal, winner of the Giro d’Italia, has had 22 urine tests and 13 blood controls so far this year.
That is less than Federer and Williams each pocketed for winning the men and women’s singles titles at Wimbledon this year.
Cycling says it spent $4.7 million on testing alone in 2011, with teams, riders, race organizers and the UCI all contributing.