O#039;Neal says McEnroe took steroids, other drugs

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 26, 2002

NEW YORK -- Tatum O'Neal says ex-husband John McEnroe took steroids while he was on the pro tennis tour, and used cocaine and marijuana -- but only off the court.

O'Neal spoke about McEnroe on ABC's ''20/20,'' which will be broadcast Friday, in response to his new autobiography, ''You Cannot Be Serious.''

McEnroe, now a TV commentator, wrote in the book that they ''were high'' the first time they had sex in 1984 but didn't reveal the drug. O'Neal told ABC it was cocaine.

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O'Neal also told the network she is ''being drug tested by a doctor in L.A.,'' adding, ''I've been clean now for a few months.''

She said McEnroe used steroids ''when he was coming back after Sean (their son) was born'' in 1987. McEnroe won seven major championships during his career; his last Grand Slam tournament was the 1992 U.S. Open.

Asked if tennis officials ever knew about McEnroe's alleged steroid use, O'Neal told ABC: ''I never read about it. I made him stop because he was becoming violent.''

McEnroe is in London, where he is calling matches at Wimbledon for NBC and the BBC. His agent, Gary Swain, declined to make him available for comment, but read a statement from McEnroe that said:

''I am very disappointed in Tatum's statements. I had hoped that after all these years she would see things more accurately and that she would share my concern for the welfare of our children.''

McEnroe and O'Neal divorced in 1992. He has been married to singer Patty Smyth since 1997. The Associated Press