New York, Nov. 9 (ANI): While former tennis champion Andre Agassi understands the criticism coming his way from peers like Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Martina Navratilova for admitting in his autobiography that he did drugs, he also says that they need not be so harsh.
"It's what you don't wanna hear, but when somebody takes a performance inhibitor, a recreational drug... The one thing that I would hope is not that there aren't rules that need to be followed, but along with that would come some compassion that maybe this person doesn't need condemnation. Maybe this person could stand a little help. And I had a problem. And there might be many other athletes out there that test positive for recreational drugs that has a problem. So I would I would ask for some compassion," he said.
"Regardless of how somebody else would perceive the life I've lived, the fact that I perceived it that way and found a way to get through I think is a hopeful, inspirational story," he replied.
Getting a second chance, he took it, pouring himself back into the game. At an age when most tennis careers are winding down, his was winding up.
At 29, he won the French Open, only the fifth man in tennis history to win every grand slam title.
In the span of 18 months, he went from being ranked 141 in the world back to number one. It was one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. And it showed.
His career would roll on for another seven years. At the 2006 U.S. Open, accompanied by his wife and two children, he was 36.
His body was giving out and he knew it would be his last tournament. Everyone did. (ANI)