Andre Agassi’s confession that he took crystal meth in 97 and got away with lying to testing officials took a little shine off the great man’s glare this week for many. Here you are talking about one of the greatest athletes of all time, on the most visible, one of the great champions, one of the few to do all the grand slams, and you would think he would be beyond a slagging off by anyone, but it seems this time he has gone beyond the line.
The reasons for confessing come handily with the release of the new book, his autobiography. He doesn’t need the money, he doesn’t need the attention, he is loved and adored by his fans and people outside tennis. Perhaps it was something “he had to do”, whatever the reasons, whilst not condoning drug use in any shape or form, the word is that it won’t deflect too much from the great man, his charity work in vegas is legendary, he’s supposed to be a great family man, the question will always be “why?”, and perhaps only the great man can answer that?
A litte background to the drug taking would be that agassi’s life was in a mess back then, relationship problems, the hollywood lifestyle, drinking, fell out of love with tennis etc etc. The story of how he came back from there is legendary. From being ranked 141 in the world, he climbed back to number one with the help of gil reyes, a legendary hard nosed vegas trainer who had him running running forwards, and backwards up 900 yard vegas sand dunes-until he was often vomitting!!!
His weight training was often legendary too, bench pressing 310 pounds, which is superb for not such a big guy, with previous lifestyle asnd fitness problems to say the least! The bottom line was that Agassi applied himself again to realise the champion potential he always had, which most of us saw all too briefly in his sole wimbledon win in 92.
His story is often inspirational, and unfortunately, this drug confession will only make his book that much more readable!! Will probably and go out and buy it myself today! If all this helps agassi come out and tell the kids in the world about all the horrible realities about crystal meth and all drugs, some good may come out of it?!