Czech tennis player Petra Kvitova on Sunday advanced to French Open second round, winning her first match against American player Julia Boserups.The two-time Wimbledon champion won 6-3, 6-2 against Boserup in a match which lasted around an hour and 13 minutes, reports Efe.The 27-year-old had to undergo a four-hour operation to repair tendons and nerves in her left hand after sustaining knife wounds from an attacker at her home in Prostejov, Czech Republic, on December 20. Doctors said it would take her six months to recover.Kvitova is set to face the winner of the match between America’s Bethanie Mattek-Sand and Russian Evgeniya Rodina.
Topics The PGA banned Robert Garrigus for three months after he tested positive for cannabis. Photograph: Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images Twitter Instead, Rebagliati said, “I became a source of entertainment, a joke.” Robin Williams had a good one about “that poor Canadian snowboarder” in Live on Broadway. “Marijuana enhances many things,” Williams said, “colours, flavours, sensations but you are certainly not fucking empowered. When you’re stoned, you’re lucky if you can find your own goddamn feet. The only way it’s a performance-enhancing drug [PED] is if there’s a big fucking Hershey bar at the end of the run. Then you’ll be like a Swiss ski jumper going, ‘I’m there!’”It’s true, the idea that pot might enhance sporting performance has never seemed like the strongest argument, unless you count the story about the time James Hunt escaped from the Scottish police because they tried to pull him over for speeding while he had “a big bag of weed” in the car. “It ended up being a three-car chase,” said his son Freddie. Hunt got away, “but to be fair, he was a Formula One champion and it probably helped that he was driving a 6.9-litre Mercedes”. Robert Garrigus drug ban sums up a PGA policy that seems only to catch unknowns Cannabis Olympic Games Facebook Ewan Murray Drugs in sport In the years after he gave up snowboarding, Ross Rebagliati tried selling real estate, running a ski school, working as the director of sport at a winter resort and standing as the Liberal Party candidate for Okanagan-Coquihalla, until, in 2013, he finally decided to get in to the marijuana business. Which made sense, because Rebagliati got famous when he won the gold in the giant slalom at the Nagano Olympics in 1998 and infamous two days later when the IOC stripped him of his medal and kicked him out of the Games because he had tested positive for cannabis. So a couple of decades later he decided to start flogging pot under the brand name Ross’ Gold.What happened to Rebagliati seemed particularly cruel because he had given up smoking dope before the Games started. His friends had not been so careful and he had breathed in second-hand smoke. “Unlike Bill Clinton,” Jay Leno told him on the Tonight Show, “you inhaled but you didn’t smoke”. Rebagliati was the first snowboarder to win an Olympic gold medal. It should have set him up for life, only no one wanted to put a stoner on the front of a cereal box. “Cannabis back then was seen as being for losers,” Rebagliati told the New York Times, “The big corporate sponsors didn’t want to sponsor me.” Pinterest Support The Guardian Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Share on Twitter Since you’re here… features Share on Facebook Reuse this content Share via Email It’s never really been clear whether pot was a PED or not. Rebagliati got his medal back after he had spent 11 hours in a Japanese cell on the grounds that FIS regulations prohibited pot only in events where there was a “fear factor”, where they reckoned it had clear performance-enhancing potential. Snowboarding did not count. But even so, when the World Anti-Doping Agency was set up the next year they put cannabis on the prohibited list. They do not just ban substances because they’re performance enhancing, after all, but also because they represent a health risk, or are against the spirit of the sport. And whether or not pot improved anyone’s game, it was still illegal.Or it was. Nowadays it is not. Pot is legal for either recreational or medical use in the majority of US states and the whole of Canada, which means you can buy it in a shop right around the corner from Wada’s headquarters in Montreal. Which is why Rebagliati has been back in the press, leading calls for Wada to take it off the banned list. “I think it’s time, it’s overdue actually,” he told Reuters. “If athletes are allowed to consume alcohol and tobacco let them have weed. It is the only thing that is good for you of those three things.” They have not yet … and just last week the Professional Golfers’ Association banned Robert Garrigus for three months after he tested positive for it. The PGA argues it is a “drug of abuse”.Tell that to Rebagliati. He has shut down Ross’ Gold, which was reportedly selling, among other things a $19,000 gold-plated bong, and launched Legacy products, which offers a wholesome range of oils, tinctures, and horticultural kit. Attitudes have changed. The moral and medical arguments for banning marijuana have both fallen away, whatever the PGA says, and Wada already allows CBD (cannabidol), the non-psychoactive hemp compound. Oddly enough, the best argument for banning marijuana may just be that there is more evidence that it is a PED after all. It certainly seems to help players cope with pain and some say it improves their mental focus too.In the US a growing number of athletes have been speaking out about their marijuana use during games: the former Golden State Warriors basketball player Stephen Jackson admitted “it’s been a couple of games where I smoked before games and had great games” and his teammate Matt Barnes agreed “all my best games I was medicated”. In the NFL the Jacksonville Jaguars offensive lineman’ Eben Britton said: “NFL games I played stoned were some of the best games I ever played.” In MLB the former San Diego Padres’ pitcher Dirk Hayhurst said pot is so common the league is like a “Cheech and Chong experiment”.NBA players guess maybe 80% use it and Britton says the number may be higher in the NFL, where it has become a common alternative to opioids as pain medication. The running back Mike James made history last year when he became the first player to apply for a therapeutic use exemption for marijuana. James had been addicted to painkillers until he weaned himself off them with pot. These days, Rebagliati is not worried about whether his habit is going to put off any corporate sponsors. In fact he is looking to become one himself: “We want to really leverage the legal position we have right now and participate in the marketing and sponsorship of events,” he says. “Maybe even one day things like the Tour de France or the Olympics.” Share on Pinterest … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. 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