Tatum O'Neal says John McEnroe used steroids

Wednesday, June 26th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) _ Tatum O'Neal says her 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 is scheduled to air 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 said in the interview that it was cocaine.

The 38-year-old actress also told ABC 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 whether tennis officials knew about McEnroe's alleged steroid use, O'Neal said: ``I never read about it. I made him stop because he was becoming violent.''

McEnroe, 43, is in London calling Wimbledon matches 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.