MADRID: Claycourt king Rafael Nadal has blasted the decision by a Spanish judge not to reveal the names of the athletes implicated in the infamous Operation Puerto doping case, Spanish press reported Friday.
On Tuesday judge Julia Patricia Santamaria refused to allow the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) access to the sachets of blood that were seized in the Spanish police operation against Dr Eufemiano Fuentes, and even ordered that they be destroyed.
Unless that decision is reversed, it means the world may never know the names of those people who used Fuentes's services in order to gain an unfair advantage in their sport.
“I find it unfair that the names of the cheats are not given, whether they're Spanish or not,” said Nadal, according to the AS and Marca newspapers.
“The image that this verdict gives our country is not the best.
“It seems to me to be a mistake not to reveal the names of the cheats so that at least they can feel the contempt of fellow sportsmen and feel ashamed.”
WADA and the Spanish anti-doping agency have both said they will appeal the ruling.
During the case, which ran from the end of January to the beginning of April, Fuentes claimed to have worked with athletes from a variety of sports.
Despite that admission, Judge Santamaria never once asked him to name those athletes.