Tennis: Marcelo Melo banned for doping

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London, Sep 25: Brazilian doubles specialist Marcelo Melo has been banned for two months after failing a drugs test, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) said. The 24-year-old, who reached the men's semi-finals at Wimbledon with compatriot Andre Sa, tested positive for the banned stimulant isometheptene at Queen's Club in June.

''The ITF found that there had been no intent on the part of Mr Melo to enhance his sporting performance by the taking of isometheptene and therefore... determined that Mr Melo should be suspended for a period of two months,'' the ruling body said in a statement yesterday.

The suspension was backdated to Sept. 10 and will end on November 9.

Melo will forfeit prize money and ranking points earned at Queen's Club and the US Open.

The Brazilian, ranked 25th in doubles, will retain his results from tournaments in between because he did not know about the failed test until just before the U.S. Open.


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