Vijay Singh is suing the PGA Tour accusing them of treating him unfairly and causing him humiliation. The golfer admitted to using deer antler spray, and the PGA Tour sanctioned him and accused him of violating its doping policy, then cleared him of wrongdoing last week. During the Tour’s investigation, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) decided that the spray is no longer prohibited because though it does contain IGF-1, the amounts are too small to have an effect.
According to USA Today Sports:
The lawsuit says the Tour could have known by conducting some basic testing and research that the product Singh sprayed contained no active biological ingredient and could not possibly have provided any performance enhancement.
“The PGA Tour has now finally admitted that the use of deer antler spray is not prohibited,” the suit claims. “Rather than performing its duties to golfers first, and then determining whether there had been any violation of the Anti-Doping Program, the PGA Tour rushed to judgment and accused one of the world’s hardest working and most dedicated golfers of violating the rules of the game.”
The lawsuit also indicates unfair treatment. Singh says that the Tour knew of other players like Mark Calcavecchia who used the Spray, but chose not to investigate them:
According to USA Today Sports, the lawsuit claims:
the Tour “did not discipline Calcavecchia, but instead merely told Calcavecchia, an admitted habitual and intentional user of the Spray, to stop using the Spray. Moreover, the PGA Tour told Calcavecchia to stop using the Spray without doing any testing of the product to determine whether its use was prohibited under the Anti-Doping Program. If the PGA Tour had done responsible testing of the product in 2011, it would have known that its consumption was not prohibited and Singh would have been spared this injurious treatment.”
Singh claims the actions of the Tour have caused him undue harm and damaged his reputation.
“I am proud of my achievements, my work ethic, and the way I live my life,” Singh said in a statement. “The PGA Tour not only treated me unfairly, but displayed a lack of professionalism that should concern every professional golfer and fan of the game.”
Singh is being represented by attorney Peter Ginsberg, who represented the NFL’s Jonathan Vilma in the New Orleans Saints bounty case. John Ogilvie who’s a member of the player’s advisory council thinks Singh is getting bad advice for suing the PGA. He says they rely on the WADA.
” … I think there would have been universal approval from all the players for Vijay if he had sued WADA. The PGA Tour isn’t in the business of testing what people put in their bodies. We rely on an outside association. That’s important to remember.”
Good advice or bad advice will be determined later. I think the PGA Tour will need to work better with the WADA and stay on top of the changes in the WADA policies. It should also ensure that actions and sanctions against golfers are fair and accurate. It’s probably best to assume his career with the PGA will be strained, at best, going forward. I hope he can recover, move on and get back to doing what he does best, golfing.
What do you think?
Your Jersey Girlfriend,