Maria Sharapova Reveals Failing a Drug Test at Australian Open (VIDEO) - UBITENNIS
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Maria Sharapova Reveals Failing a Drug Test at Australian Open (VIDEO)

Maria Sharapova will be provisionally suspended starting on March 12. The Russian shocked the tennis world on Monday announcing that she has tested positive to a drug test at the recent Australian Open. Denying rumors of retirement, the 5-time Grand Slam champion took full responsibility and explained how the substance only recently entered the banned lit of substances compiled by WADA.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAVWgcSr-Ik

 

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With a statement, the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme (TADP) has announced that Maria Sharapova will be provisionally suspended with effect from 12 March, pending determination of the case.

‘If I were to announce my retirement it wouldn’t have been in this LA downtown hotel with fairly ugly carpet” said Maria Sharapova in the press conference she organized on Monday to admit to the world that she has failed a drug test this January in Australia, resulting positive to Meldonium, a substance that was added to WADA’s banned list on January 1st this year.

Speculations about Sharapova retiring from tennis started raising on Sunday afternoon, as soon as on the official website of Maria Sharapova it was announced that the Russian was going to set a live press conference on Monday March 7th, from Los Angeles to make an announcement.

The news soon spread on social media, with experts and journalists assuming Maria could have decided to call it a career, aged 28. The Russian had decided to pull out of the tournament of Indian Wells few weeks ago with a forearm  injury, just the last of a series of physical problems the Russian has had to deal with lately. Sharapova had to pull put of the US Open last year and only played in Wuhan, the WTA Finals and in Fed Cup in the last part of 2015, competing in a total of just 4 events in 6 months.

Maria started the 2016 season having to pull out of Brisbane, where she was defending champion, but still managed to reach the quarter-finals at the Australian Open before losing once again to Serena Williams.

All rumors have now officially failed to find confirmation. The 5-time Grand Slam champion, one of the biggest competitors the sport has ever witness on a tennis court, has decided to come clean and reveal that she was tested positive at the Australian Open for a medicine she had been taking for 10 years, since 2006, but that entered the forbidden list for WADA starting on January 1st 2016.

Meldonium and its benefits for professional athletes 

The substance Maria has tested positive for is Meldonium an anti-ischemic used in the treatment of heart diseases. Maria had been taking the drug legally for 10 years for magnesium deficiency after a family history of diabetes.

Meldonium is a drug that wasn’t initially banned on the ATP and WTA tours, despite its ability to help increase the endurance performance of athletes.

Sharapova revealed that when she started taking the drug in 2006, she was had many health problems, including sings of diabetes.

Maria’s quotes

Here is what Maria told to the media during her press conference today in Los Angeles, which was broadcast live on You Tube.

”I received a letter from WADA with changes made in the rules in December, but I did not look at that list. I take full responsibility. I don’t want to end my career with this and I hope I will be given another chance to play the sport I love. I don’t know yet what is going to happen, but I will be in contact with the ITF to understand the further developments. I have let my fans down and the sport I love so much and I have been playing since I was 4 years old down”.

https://twitter.com/ESPNTennis/status/706937047471276033

It is not yet known which consequences the Russian will face for the failed drug test. As far as now not even Maria herself knows what is going to happen. Sharapova revealed she is still healing from her forearm injury which forced her to pull off at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells this week.

Both Sharapova’s parents, Yuri and Yelena, were in Los Angeles to support Maria in such a tough moment, clearly the hardest moment the Russian has had to face in her life and career as a professional tennis players.

On the same day as Sharapova another Russian sports’ star, ice dancing champion Ekaterina Bobrova failed a drug test, testing positive to the same substance as the tennis’ star, Meldonium.

ATP

‘Why Don’t You Like Him?’ – Stefanos Tsitsipas Quizzed Over Rivalry With Fellow Player

It can be safe to say that these two players will not be teaming up to play in the doubles any time soon.

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LONDON: ‘We would not go to dinner together’ was a phrase used by Greek sensation Stefanos Tsitsipas when addressing his rivalry with Daniil Medvedev on Monday.

 

The 21-year-old scored his first win over the Russian on his sixth attempt. A historic occasion for Tsitsipas, who is the first Greek to qualify for the ATP Finals. However, the talk after wasn’t so much about the match. It was about his somewhat fiery relationship with Medvedev that is highlighted by one particular incident.

During the 2018 Miami Open, the umpire had to step in after the conclusion of their match. Both were frustrated with each other for taking long toilet breaks. Medvedev took his at the end of the second set and Tsitsipas took his midway through the decider. On top of that, there was also a dispute over a net point. At the end of their match, Medvedev called his rival ‘a small kid who doesn’t know how to fight.’

“I did get pissed and said what I said, which I do regret, but at the time I was very frustrated that things happened this way.” Tsitsipas recounted.
“I completely forgot about the past. I mean, our chemistry definitely isn’t the best that you can find on the tour. It just happens with people that it’s not that you can just like everyone.”

Since then there has been little improvement in relations. During the Shanghai Masters in October, Tsitsipas took a swipe at what he described as a ‘boring’ style of play from his opponent. Prompting another jibe from Medvedev.

Based on the comments, it appears that neither players are fond of each other. But can it be described as hatred between the two? If you ask Tsitsipas, his answer is a resounding no.

“It’s not that I hate him. I guess as he said, we will not go to dinner together, so…” The Greek explained.
“I respect him, for sure. That’s because he had a long way to come where he is right now. He’s a Grand Slam finalist, so that takes a lot of respect from me to him.”

Despite the diplomatic response, there is no doubt that the camp of the world No.6 is delighted with his latest victory in what had been a one-sided rivalry until now.

“It means more than extra. It’s a victory that I craved for a long time now, and it’s great that I came in at this moment.” Tsitsipas concludes.
“He’s a tough player. He’s a very difficult player to face. He’s not giving you an easy time when you’re out on the court. So it definitely means a lot.”

It is not impossible that the two could face each other again later this week if they both reach the final. Although that will be a tough task given both Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev are also in their group.

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(VIDEO) Thiem Shocks Federer on Opening Day at the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals

A video recap from the O2 Arena in London. Djokovic loses just three games to Berrettini but it’s Thiem’s straight-set win to Federer that makes the headlines

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Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem at the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals (photo Roberto Zanettin)

Chief Editor Ubaldo Scanagatta comments on the first two singles matches of the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals. Novak Djokovic started his quest for his record-tying sixth ATP Finals title with a comprehensive victory over Italian debutant Matteo Berrettini. Dominic Thiem advance to 3-0 in the year against Roger Federer who is not faced with the prospect of defeating Berrettini and Djokovic to advance to the semifinals.

 

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Lukas Kubot and Marcelo Melo come back from one set down to beat Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek

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Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo came back from one set down to beat Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek 4-6 6-4 10-5 in one hour and 40 minutes at the Nitto ATP Finals at the O2 Finals in London. Kubot and Melo moved to 1-0 in the Group Jonas Bjorkman.

 

The Polish and Brazilian team join Michael Venus and and Raven Klaasen at the top of the Group Bjorkman with a 1-0 lead.

Dodig and Polasek rallied from 3-4 down by winning three consecutive games to claim the opening set 6-4. Kubot and Melo saved a break point in the fourth game before getting the first break three games later to take a 4-3 lead.

Dodig and Polasek did not convert a break point before dropping serve, but they earned two consecutive breaks to claim the first set 6-4. Dodig and Polasek were broken in the first game of the second set and did not convert any of their two break points in the next game.

Kubot and Melo wasted four consecutive set points in the ninth game, but they served out the second set at love with a backhand passing shot down the line to force the match to the third set.

Kubot and Melo got two mini-breaks in the Match Tie-Break 10-5. Kubot hit an ace to seal the tie-break 10-5.

“It feels great to get the win. I think we played a very good match today. I think the level was high. We are very happy to play such a great set and a Match Tie-Break”,said Melo.

 In the first match of the afternoon match Raven Klaasen and Michael Venus saved four break points in his 6-3 6-4 win over Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-3 6-4 in 64 minutes. Klaasen and Venus saved two break points in the opening game before breaking serve in the fourth game to open up a 3-1 lead. Klaasen claimed the break with a backhand volley after a forehand return from Venus. Klaasen and Venus sealed the opening set after 30 minutes.

Both players held serve in the first six games before Klaasen and Venus claimed the decisive break in the seventh game to take a 4-3 lead after a double fault from Salisbury.

“To be the first match of the Finals is a bit nerve racking and to get off to a good start certainly puts our minds at ease for the rest of the tournament”, said Klaasen.

 

 

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