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Disqualification for two years - the end of Sharapova's career?
March 7, 2016 Maria Sharapova at an emergency press conference in Los Angeles announced that her doping test, taken for Australian Open, tested positive for meldonium. On March 12, Sharapova was removed from the competition. Since January 1, meldonium is included in the list of prohibited. On May 18-19, a hearing in the Sharapova case took place in London. The special commission listened to the arguments of both sides. It is known that the International Tennis Federation insisted on disqualification for a period of two years. However, the members of the commission considered that Maria did not deliberately violate the rules of the anti-doping commission, therefore, the punishment should be moderate.
>>> Repentance. How Sharapova was caught doping
The Russian woman was suspended from performances for two years. Taking into account her admission to the use of meldonium, disqualification began on January 26, 2016 and will end at midnight on January 25, 2018. Sharapova has the opportunity to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne. The Russian woman said that she would do just that. How fair is this punishment? Will Maria be able to return to tennis in 2018?
Vitaly Mutko, Minister of Sports of the Russian Federation:
- I'm sorry. Masha herself confessed publicly. There were extenuating circumstances, they took into account - they were given two years. Only regret.
Shamil Tarpishchev, President of the Russian Tennis Federation:
- She has American lawyers. Perhaps an appeal should be made. We will also try to participate in this. It is impossible to completely cancel the disqualification, since she admitted the fact that she took the drug after January 1. But it seems to me that it is really possible to shorten the term. Moreover, it will be possible to take into account the impeccable behavior of Sharapova and the prescriptions of doctors for the use of this drug.
Mikhail Verzhba, press secretary of the Russian Tennis Federation:
- We respect and make a decision, adopted by the ITF independent tribunal for Maria Sharapova. We think it will be appealed by representatives of the athlete. In turn, the Russian Tennis Federation will support any decision of Maria - both on the need for an appeal and to continue her career in the future.
Eduard Bezuglov, doctor of the Russian national football team:
- Most likely, such a serious punishment is caused by the high concentration of meldonium in the athlete's body. This means that the drug was taken shortly before the January sample, which is a 100% anti-doping rule violation. As for Sharapova's future, only the athlete herself can answer this question.
Sergei Ilyukov, anti-doping expert, doctor of the Finnish Olympic team:
- The most pessimistic expectations have come true. Mildronate was originally and, I will say it again, in my opinion, absolutely incorrectly, included in the group of hormones and metabolic modulators, the punishment for taking which is from two to four years. Sharapova received the minimum sentence of two years. I had not yet delved into the nuances of protection, but I was relatively surethat in the case of taking mildronate for medical reasons, she has a chance to receive a retrospective therapeutic exception for the use of mildronate.
In my personal opinion, this is an extremely negative precedent that will soon affect other athletes who have had problems with mildronate. WADA has demonstrated flexibility in resolving the issue by introducing threshold concentrations, but, apparently, the party interested in the defense has not put forward any weighty arguments.
Review of foreign press. Sharapova to execute or pardon
Review of the foreign press and social networks after the press conference of Maria Sharapova, at which she confessed to the use of Mildronate doping.
Anna Dmitrieva, known former tennis player, TV commentator:
- I am very sorry that this happened. I don't know how fair such a punishment is ... I am now preparing for the Olympics and watching various disqualifications and new doping tests - there is a lot of unfairness and incomprehensible things. One could expect such a decision for Maria, judging by the general mood.
Anna Chakvetadze, the former fifth racket of the world, columnist of the Championship:
- They wanted to give Maria four years. I heard that Sharapova's team wants to reduce the sentence to a year or a year and a half. That would be a great result, because they don't even expect to get less than a year. The lawyer wants the disqualification to begin from the day when the doping test was taken, and not from the day when Maria announced the use.
Andrey Chesnokov, Russian tennis player, semi-finalist Roland Garros - 1989:
- For me, this disqualification is a disgrace to WADA. I think this is very cruel. Such a decision means effectively sentencing the player to death. At her age, losing participation in competitions is the end of her career. Could have made a fine, disqualified for a year. Well, it would have been real doping, but here opinions were divided: there are players who were later amnestied.
Sharapova's case among others doping scandals in tennis
Russian woman Maria Sharapova, having confessed to the use of Mildronate, stood on a par with other tennis players involved in doping scandals.
Evgeny Kafelnikov , vice-president of the Russian Tennis Federation:
- If the civilized world, the ITF anti-doping leadership, have decided to disqualify Maria Sharapova, then we must respect him. Returning to big sport after a two-year break is individual for everyone. Someone can, but someone loses shape and ends their careers. I can't speak for Sharapova.
Rauza Islanova, tennis coach, mom of Marat and Dinara Safin:
- It's a shock for me. There has never been a situation like this in tennis. I feel sorry for Maria, I think it will be extremely difficult for her to resume her career after two years without competition. Maybe it's a nicknameteaches roughly, but Sharapova, in fact, was knocked out. I do not think that such a large amount of mildronate was in Maria's blood to disqualify her for two years, it's just ridiculous. It hurts that our best tennis player was treated so unfairly, one can only sympathize with Sharapova.
Ekaterina Bychkova, Russian tennis player, columnist of the Championship:
- Theoretically, keep in shape until January 2018 years is possible, but does Maria need it? Will she have motivation? A lot can happen in a year and a half. Maybe Sharapova will give birth to a couple of kids, everything will be great for her, and she won't need the rest.
>>> Maria Sharapova. From admiration to contempt
Viktor Yanchuk, Honored Coach of Russia:
- This is awful, I sincerely sympathize with Sharapova. Maria is already a veteran, everyone in Russia hoped for her performance at the Olympic Games in Brazil. She had a real chance to fight for gold. The Olympic medal is her lifelong dream, more than four Grand Slam tournaments. Sharapova lost the opportunity to compete for the award of her life. Waiting for the next Olympic Games in four years is unrealistic. And young people are advancing, and Maria herself gets tired of endless trainings and tournaments. She will not be able to hold out for the next four years at the current level. She is almost 30 years old - it's time to solve family issues.
Anna Skorodumova, Vice President of the Russian Tennis Federation:
- It's a shame that a person has done so much in tennis, contributed so much interesting in the game, from the very beginning she played brilliantly and suddenly ends her last years so sadly. It's a shame that they did this to her exactly when she was already close to ending her career. Surely this would be her last Olympics. A man at the end of such a difficult path was taken and chopped up.
Konstantin Bogorodetsky, former captain of the women's national team in the Federation Cup:
- The fact that Sharapova will not be able to play for the Russian national team and in the Fed Cup, not the main problem. The main thing is that first of all it is a blow to Masha herself and to her prestige. She is a person who now personified the country, the success of personal achievements, beauty. This is a blow to the whole world tennis, because she is such a leader who can be put next to Williams. Despite the number of tournaments won by the Williams sisters and personal relationships, Masha was the engine of the development, prestige and entertainment of tennis around the world. When such people find themselves in a similar situation, it is sad.
>>> Question of the day. Should Sharapova be punished?
Daniil Salnikov, editor of the Championship Tennis section:
- Blow! Another blow! - under this motto the situation with Sharapova developed. At first, the shock from the very fact of doping, then months of waiting for a verdict, and now followed by finishing. I think this is an irreparable loss for Russian and world tennis. It won't be easy to get through. Now you need to get used to tennis without Sharapova. At least until January 2018, or until anotherpoint, if Maria's team manages to shorten the period of ineligibility.
- I'm in shock and I have no words. Mary's pep. Very disappointing. It feels like a particle of the soul was ripped out.
- Two years ?! For a drug that gives nothing in terms of the game ?! Absolutely fucking !!!
- It's time for the birth of a baby.
- Very, very sorry that everything turned out so stupid. She definitely didn't deserve it. And yes, she will really be missed on the tour.
- Strength to you, Maria! For many of us, you will forever remain No. 1.
- Even the most vicious haters counted on a year. Today is their holiday. Two is a sentence. It is virtually impossible to return to a tour after them at her age.
- I specially found a pdf file from the ITF website. So, the federation took into account the fact that Maria unknowingly continued to use mildronate. And still soldered for two years. Imagine how much Masha would have received for deliberate use? I do not argue that you need to answer for ignorance of the law. But the deadline was too high. Remember Troitsky. He served a year for refusing to donate blood. Don't you think the ITF has double standards?
- Hi Tarpishchev, who, knowing the deal, still told Sharapov at the Olympics.