Courts reduce Troicki doping ban from 18 to 12 months
The Court of Arbitration for Sport announced on Tuesday that it had cut Serbian tennis player Viktor Troicki's 18-month doping ban to 12 months.
The Swiss-based tribunal said that while its appeals panel had rejected the former world number 12's call to void the sanction, it ruled that there was no indication that he had sought to get away with doping.
"The CAS has determined that the player had committed a doping offence, but that his fault was not significant," it said in a statement.
Troicki, a Davis Cup winner in 2010, turned to the CAS in August in a drive to overturn his ban which was handed down by the International Tennis Federation (ITF).
The sanction, imposed in July came after he was found guilty of failing to provide a blood sample during a drugs test at the Monte Carlo Masters.
However despite the reduction in the ban, Troicki will now play no part in Serbia's attempt to regain the Davis Cup from the Czech Republic which begins on November 15.
The 27-year-old maintained that anti-doping officials at the tournament had told him his urine sample was sufficient, given that he did not feel well enough to provide a blood sample.
But that failure constituted a dope test infringement, said the ITF, despite the player's insistence that he was under stress at the time.
The CAS said that the anti-doping control officer, or DCO, on duty at the Masters "should have informed the player in clearer terms of the risks caused by his refusal to undergo a blood test".
"Despite the misunderstanding between the player and the DCO, there was no suggestion that Mr. Troicki intended to evade the detection of a banned substance in his system," it added.
Troicki's closed-door appeal was heard by a three-member panel of CAS arbitrators from Canada, Italy and Britain at the tribunal's Lausanne headquarters on October 9.
As a result of their decision to cut the 18-month ban to the minimum 12 months allowed by the rules, Troicki will be able to return to the circuit next July, the CAS said.