Sharapova's participation at Grand Slams doubtful after a comeback?
Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova, who will be making a comeback to tennis after a 15-months ban for drug usage, is doubtful of playing the year's Grand Slams. While Sharapova has been handed wild cards for three WTA tournament, she will need one more if she wants to play at the 2017 Roland Garros, to be held in May.
Career of Maria Sharapova
Maria Sharapova is a former world number one female tennis player and has five Grand Slam titles to her name. She also has 35 singles titles. She is the only Russian tennis star to hold a career Grand Slam. At the 2012 London Olympics, Sharapova had won a silver medal for Russia in the women's singles.
Failed drug test and ban
In March 2016, Maria Sharapova revealed of failing a drug test during the 2016 Australian Open and admitted of using meldonium, a substance banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). She was banned for two years by International Tennis Federation (ITF), but the ban was reduced to 15 months. He ban is supposed to end in April 2017.
A wild card entry for Sharapova
Banned tennis player Maria Sharapova was given a wild card entry for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart in April. The ban on Sharapova is to end on 26 April, while the tournament starts on 24th. Sharapova has agreed to play in the tournament.
Sharapova's presence at Wimbledon in hands of All England Club
Maria Sharapova will have to reach the finals of Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart if she has to survive the cut for the Rolland Garros. However, the decision on her participation at the 2017 Wimbledon will be in the hands of All England Club.
Tennis stars upset over Sharapova's wild card
World number one Andy Murray has said that banned players should not be given wild cards and they should be made to work their way back. Former world number Caroline Wozniacki also expressed her concern saying that a wild card to Sharapova was disrespectful to other players. Angelique Kerber has also shown her unhappiness over Sharapova's wild card entry at Stuttgart.
Sharapova finds support from Serena Williams
Maria Sharapova got support from former world number one Chrissie Evert who said that Sharapova's right to get the wild cards was well within the rules. Serena Williams also supported Sharapova and said that a wild card entry for Sharapova was not a problem.