Multi-Award Winning Tennis Superstar, Maria Sharapova Admits Taking Banned Substance After Being Suspended from Tennis for Failing Drugs Test


Russian professional tennis player, who is ranked world No. 6 by the Women's Tennis Association, Maria Yuryevna Sharapova, dropped a huge bombshell onto world tennis last night when she admitted she had tested positive for a banned substance at January's Australian Open.
 
The five-times Grand Slam champion who applied her legendary calm and determination, made a personal statement at a Los Angeles hotel confessing she had been caught out by tennis's anti-doping operation.
 
 
The highest earning athlete in any female sport, said that she had been found to have taken Mildronate or Meldonium, which was prohibited from January 1 this year.
 
The International Tennis Federation has now confirmed the star will be provisionally suspended from the sport March 12.
 
At a press conference which many assumed would be to announce her retirement after a spate of injuries, she delivered what is catastrophic news for her, the sport and women's tennis in particular.
 
Reading a written statement to a host of journalists at the press conference, she said she took 'full responsibility' for the test failure
 
'I had legally been taking this for ten years,' said Sharapova, who conceded that she had received a notification from the International Tennis Federation on December 22 that it was being outlawed. She admitted that she did not follow an information link that was provided.

'I take responsibility for my professionalism in my job and I made a big mistake. I know there will be consequences and I don't want to end my career this way. I really hope I will be given another chance to play tennis again. I can't blame anyone but myself. I have let my fans down.

'I know many of you thought I was retiring but if I was ever going to announce my retirement it would probably not be in a downtown Lost Angeles hotel with this fairly ugly carpet.'
 
Sharapova pictured in happier times with the French Open Trophy by the Eiffel Tower in Paris after winning the 2014 tournament

'It made me healthy and that is why I continued to take it,' Sharapova said of the banned substance after taking a small number of questions from the floor. I am still working through my injury and that is the reason I withdrew from Palm Springs, because I have still not healed my injury.'
 
Asked if she knew what the consequences of her failed test may be, Sharapova added: 'I do not. This is very new for me, I just received the letter a few days ago and I will be working with the ITF.'
 
Pictured with her 2004 Wimbledon trophy
 
The full statement from the ITF made clear Sharapova accepted the charge against her. It said;
 
'Following the statement made by Maria Sharapova in a press conference today, the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP) can confirm the following:

'On 26 January 2016, Ms Sharapova provided an anti-doping sample to the TADP in association with her participation in the 2016 Australian Open.

'That sample was analysed by a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) accredited laboratory, which returned a positive for meldonium, which is a prohibited substance under the WADA Code and, therefore also the TADP.

'In accordance with Article 8.1.1 of the TADP, Ms Sharapova was charged on 2 March with an Anti-Doping Rule Violation. Ms Sharapova has accepted the finding of meldonium in her sample collected on 26 January.

'As meldonium is a non-specified substance under the WADA (and, therefore, TADP) list of Prohibited Substances and Prohibited Methods, Ms Sharapova will be provisionally suspended with effect from 12 March, pending determination of the case.' 
Multi-Award Winning Tennis Superstar, Maria Sharapova Admits Taking Banned Substance After Being Suspended from Tennis for Failing Drugs Test Multi-Award Winning Tennis Superstar, Maria Sharapova Admits Taking Banned Substance After Being Suspended from Tennis for Failing Drugs Test Reviewed by Angel M on 01:05 Rating: 5

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