Maria Sharapova tested positive for the banned substance meldonium at the first Grand Slam tournament of this year, the Australian Open. The consequences for the renowned Tennis player were immediate and drastic. Sharapova was suspended on March 12, and her suspension will continue until the investigation of the matter is completed. Several prestigious sponsors, including NIKE and the automobile manufacturer Porsche, have also ended partnerships with the star.

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Brief description of Sharapova’s explanation

During the press conference where she announced the result of the anti-doping test, Sharapova appeared in front of the journalists who had assembled at a hotel in Los Angeles, and explained that in 2006 her physician, had prescribed her meldonium to address several health factors, including magnesium deficiency, heart arrhythmia, and a family history of diabetes.

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The athlete mentioned that she was not aware that meldonium had recently been added to the list of prohibited substances because of the fact that she failed to attentively read an email from WADA regarding the changes made to the list.

Sharapova’s achievements in this sport

Although the 28-year old tennis player is not among the top 20 tennis players, she managed to become one of the few tennis players in the history of this sport who succeeded in winning all four Grand Slam tournaments.

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Sharapova won at Wimbledon in 2004, at the US Open in 2006, at the Australian Open in 2008 and also at Rolland Garros in 2012 and 2014.

At the early age of 17, she became the third youngest player ever to win on the London grass court, and the following year she was the first Russian player to reach the top of women’s professional tennis rankings.

Main obstacles throughout her career

Maria Sharapova’s evolution as an athlete was hindered by a series of obstacles that included multiple injuries.

Another drawback was the fact that Serena Williams, whom she had defeated in the famous Wimbledon tournament in 2004, proved to be a virtually unbeatable opponent; since that meeting, Williams hasn’t lost a game to Sharapova. Taking the obstacles that Maria Sharapova has ahead of her, the most significant one being the doping scandal and the fact that she risks being banned from tennis for a long period, it remains to be seen whether her tennis career is to carry on.

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