Romanian tennis star and Former World No. 1 WTA player Simona Halep has opened up to the public several times in the past few weeks as she awaits the hearing to appeal her four-year suspension with the Court of Arbitration and Sport in February 2024. Halep has been living a nightmare since shortly after the 2022 US Open when she was accused of doping.
While in Paris recently, Halep gave an interview and offered a new answer to the question of how her playing career could end if she loses the appeal. In her interview with Euronews, Halep said that she would be forced to retire. She will be 35 years old in October 2026 when her suspension ends. According to a Romanian Tennis X/Twitter post, in her Paris interview, she said that her dream is to come back regardless of her age.
Halep goes on to say losing the appeal is the worst-case scenario, and she does not know what her body will feel like as a 35-year-old rejoining the tour.
What Simona Halep believes
Halep believes that she should be able to dictate how her career ends. She does not want it to be concluded anywhere but on the tennis court.
It is not clear which interview occurred first, but it does indicate that she holds out hope of either winning the appeal or being able to come back to play in 2026 if forced to serve the entire suspension.
Halep has many tennis legends in her corner. Chris Evert recently admitted that she believes Halep is innocent and would never knowingly use a banned substance. Her former coach, Darren Cahill, has defended her integrity and innocence from the beginning. Halep’s former coach Patrick Mouratoglou recently admitted to giving her the supplement unaware that it contained a banned substance. Many including Evert believe that Mouratloglou is to blame for Halep’s situation.