Maria Sharapova Suspension Appeal Looks Bleak With Russian Track And Field Ban

Maria Sharapova is fighting her two-year suspension, but with Russian track and field team’s ban from Rio Olympics, her prospects aren’t looking great. Both the track and field team and Maria Sharapova are banned from competing because of melodium intake, due to the latest crackdown on doping.

Maria Sharapova appealed her two-year doping ban to the highest court in sports Tuesday, and an expedited ruling will be issued next month ahead of the Rio de Janeiro Olympics,” reports ESPN. “She tested positive for meldonium at the Australian Open in January, taking it before each match at that tournament even though the substance was banned at the start of 2016.”

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The expedited appeal has been approved by the court, which means that Maria has maximum of two months to wait before the Olympics start in August.

When she received the news that she has been banned for two years, she immediately took to her social media and lawyer to start the suspension appealing.

I cannot accept an unfairly harsh two-year suspension,” Maria wrote on her Facebook page. “The tribunal, whose members were selected by the ITF, agreed that I did not do anything intentionally wrong, yet they seek to keep me from playing tennis for two years. I will immediately appeal the suspension portion of this ruling to CAS, the Court of Arbitration for Sport.”

She has been doing her best to not let the suspension wreck her life. Most recently, she was seen engaged in some retail therapy, looking for some temporary lift from her bleak professional life.

“Former world number one Maria Sharapova appeared to be attempting to take her mind off her woes as she headed out on a low-key shopping trip in Venice Beach, California, on Sunday,” reports the Daily Mail. “The sportswoman, 29, looked cool and casual in a thigh skimming grey jersey dress, highlighting her athletic figure as she browsed the shops with coach Sven Groeneveld and a male friend.”

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Before the release of her suspension verdict, she has been keeping her hopes up with pleasant posts of her enjoying life.

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Maria Sharapova looked casual and carefree as she stepped out for a bite to eat at Bluebird restaurant in London’s Chelsea,” reported the Daily Mail. “The 29-year-old sportswoman opted for a nautical-inspired look for her dinner date, teaming a striped top with black capri trousers and white trainers.”

While she is doing her best to be positive, it looks like her suspension appeal may not go very far. Just this week, the entire Russian track and field team was banned from this year’s Olympics because of melodium doping, which is the same thing that Maria Sharapova was accused of.

“Russia’s track and field team is barred from competing in the Olympic Games this summer because of a far-reaching doping conspiracy, an extraordinary punishment without precedent in Olympics history,” reports the New York Times.

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The article reported that the allegations were both broad and detailed, revealing that Russian track and field stars were “given a three-drug cocktail of banned substances and liquor” and that “authorities helped athletes evade drug tests by surreptitiously swapping out tainted urine” and destroying “thousands of incriminating samples.”

If it is revealed that Maria Sharapova is somehow related to this doping scandal, there is no hope for the tennis star to come back on court within the next two years.

Do you think Maria Sharapova’s intake of melodium was related to Russian track and field team’s doping scandal? Drop your thoughts in the comments below!

[Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]