Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova, the highest-paid woman in sports, said on Monday that she failed a drug test at the Australian Open due to a substance she has been taking for 10 years for health issues.
The 28-year-old Sharapova, a five-time grand slam champion, will be provisionally suspended starting March 12, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) said. She is the seventh athlete in a month to test positive for meldonium, which is used to treat diabetes and low magnesium, and was only banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency as of Jan 1.
That victory also made her the third-youngest Wimbledon champion, behind only Lottie Dod and Martina Hingis, and the fourth-youngest grand slam winner in the open era after Hingis, Monica Seles and Tracy Austin.
She has also been has suspended their Nike sponsorship of Maria Sharapova following her failed drug test at the Australian Open.
Here’s what her fans had to say about the whole thing.
@MariaSharapova you’ll be back stronger. Keep fighting 💪🏼
— Tag le Føu (@Taglefou) March 8, 2016
What is meldonium and why did Maria Sharapova take it? Sad news. She will be missed. brings into question so many.. https://t.co/4cyw8yK93L
— manojchandra mishra (@manojchandra) March 8, 2016
Maria Sharapova needs to examine her drug taking regime, the one she has taken for the last 10 years, did not bring her great success 🎾
— Hobbits in my Garden (@beckynz) March 8, 2016
And then there was this tweet.
Maria Sharapova tum ne aesa kiun kiyaa 🙁
— EBAD (@Ebad_Iqbal) March 8, 2016