Russian tennis player, Maria Sharapova has been handed a two year suspension from all tennis related activity for doping.
Sharapova had tested positive for a banned substance, “Meldonium” during the Australian Open in January and eventually held a press conference admitting she had failed the test. She received a provisional suspension in March after she admitted to taking the banned substance as she claimed she did not know Meldonium had been banned at the time.
Sharapova claimed to have been prescribed the drug for an undisclosed medical condition but Meldonium is said to increase blood flow which in turn improves exercise capacity.
She has now received a two year suspension from the International Tennis Federation (ITF) as she was deemed to have used the drug ‘unintentionally’. Sharapova who was the sport’s richest athlete has lost almost all her major endorsement and her suspension will hurt her career even further.