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.






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”.

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.


Auger Aliassime overcomes slow start to beat Seppi in Washington

The Canadian looked down and out early in the match but bounced back to avenge a loss he suffered at the French Open in June.




Second seed Felix Auger Aliassime survived a huge scare in his opening match at the Citi Open in Washington.

The Canadian was on the verge of being upset by the Italian Andreas Seppi but battled back to beat him 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 in one hour and 59 minutes. Blasting a total of 25 winners and nine aces in the win.


“In my mind, I wanted to find a way to come back. To get that early break in the second really helped me a lot and I think I served a little bit better and I put more volume and height on my shot,” said Auger-Aliassime. “I was more patient and in the first set I was missing too quickly in the rallies so digging deep physically and mentally allowed me to come back nicely in the match and to finish strong in the third set. I am happy with the way things turned around for me today”.

It was the world number 88 with the better start to the match and after both players held their opening service games he had two chances to get the early break and took a 2-1 lead. After consolidating the break, the Italian set up another breakpoint with a stunning forehand winner, broke again for a 4-1 lead, and served out the first set.

Auger-Aliassime was keen on getting back into the match and wanted to avoid a second straight upset loss to the Italian. After holding serve in the first game of the second set he had two chances to take an early lead and broke for the 2-0 lead with a forehand up the line of his very own on breakpoint. That was enough for him to serve out the second set and send the match into a decisive third set to decide the winner.

It was the Canadian who repeated what he did in the second set holding the opening service game and breaking Seppi’s serve with a sublime passing shot. The Italian responded the next game by breaking right back but failed to consolidate the break as the world number 15 broke again with his powerful backhand winner.

At 5-2, the Auger-Aliassime found himself at match point and it took him five attempts before being able to convert and seal the match. Avenging a loss he suffered at Roland Garros.

After the match in his post-match press conference, the Canadian was asked if he had the loss to Seppi at the French Open in the back of his mind during the match.

” In a way yes of course because we played once and he beat me and as a player, you never want to go down twice in a row against a player but it happens but in my case, I really wanted to find a way to win that match and get revenge just for myself to try and get the win”. he said.

Auger Aliassime will now face the winner of the second-round match between Jenson Brooksby or Frances Tiafoe in the third round.

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National Bank Open Suffers Tripple Blow As Top 10 Stars Pull Out

Canada’s most prestigious tennis event will be missing some top names in the women’s draw but organisers remain confident the tournament will still be a hit.





The tournament director of the National Bank Open says he is ‘still counting on exceptional players’ after a series of high-profile names pulled out of the women’s draw in Montreal.


Naomi Osaka and Iga Swiatek have pulled out of the event after competing in the Olympic Games. Osaka, who lit the Olympic flame at the opening ceremony, lost to Marketa Vonmdrousova in the third round. Meanwhile, Swiatek fell in the second round to Spain’s Paula Badosa.

“I am sorry to be missing out on Montréal this year,” said Osaka who reached the quarter-finals in 2019. “Sending my best to all the fans there, the tournament and the staff. I hope to see you all in Canada next year.”

Former French Open champion Swiatek said her decision to not play in Canada is because she wants to have a break after an ‘intense’ first half of the season. So far this year the world No.8 has won 28 out of 35 matches played, winning two titles in Rome and Adelaide. She has played at the Canadian event only once in her career which was two years ago when she reached the third round as a qualifier before losing to Osaka.

“I am very sorry but this year I will not be able to play in Montréal,” said Swiatek. “The first part of the season was so intense that I need a couple of days off to rest and prepare for the next few months. I’m looking forward to playing in Canada in 2022.”

Sofia Kenin completes the trio of withdrawals from the WTA 1000 event. The American is still recovering from a foot injury that has sidelined her from the Tour since Wimbledon.

“I’m really disappointed to withdraw from the event in Montréal next week,” said Kenin. “While I’m making progress, my foot injury is not where I need it to be to play at the highest level. I feel another week of recovery and rehab is necessary. I want to thank Tennis Canada for all its efforts in holding the event during such challenging times. Best of luck to all the players.”

Commonly known as the Canadian Open, both a men’s and women’s event are held during the same week but in different locations. This year the women will be playing in Montreal and men in Toronto. Each year they alternate between the two cities. Last year’s edition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tournament director Eugène Lapierre is confident this year’s women’s draw will still live up to expectations despite the absence of some top names.

“We are still counting on exceptional players in the draw, including the 2019 champion, our very own Bianca Andreescu, as well as World No.3 Aryna Sabalenka and two-time National Bank Open champion Simona Halep. Fans should expect a few surprises because the draw has so much depth. Anything is possible, and that means some exciting tennis is in store!” He said.

Sabalenka will be the top seed in the women’s draw. The main draw will start on Monday.

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Vasek Pospisil survives scare at Citi Open

The Canadian battled back from a set down in what was a tricky opening encounter.




Vasek Pospisil was pushed to limits by qualifier Emilio Gomez in his opening match at the Citi Open.

The Canadian required three sets to beat the Ecuadorian qualifier 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 after two hours and 11 minutes of play. He hit a total of 10 aces en route to the second round.


” It’s always good to get through a tough one and I felt dialed in during the second set,” said Pospisil. “I was a little bit distracted during the first set but I am glad to get match play and getting the win is important so I am happy I got it done”.

The first three games of the opener went on serve and at 2-1 the Canadian had three chances to take an early break but the world number 165 saved all three and held serve. At 3-3, Pospisil played a poor service game and Gomez took full advantage by breaking him at love. That one break of serve was enough for him to serve out the first set.

The Canadian was determined to stay alive in the second and broke the Ecuadorian early to take a 2-0 lead and managed to turn it into a double break for a commanding 4-0 lead. Gomez got one of the breaks back but it wasn’t enough as the world number 61 would serve out the second set to force a decider.

The third set started with three breaks of serve but it was the Canadian that was finally able to hold serve and consolidate a break. That break was enough for him to serve out the match and complete the comeback.

Pospisil will next face the young American Sebastien Korda in the third round who is the 12th seed this week in the American capital.

” It’s going to be a tough one because he is playing some great tennis this year and he is an up and comer and a great player,” he said of Korda. “I will have to play really well to win that one because he is a dangerous player so I will have to serve well and return well”.

Other results

It was a busy day one at the Citi Open being held at Rock Creek Park in Washington, DC with some thrilling matches. Kei Nishikori beat Sam Querrey in straight sets 6-4, 6-3 and Marcus Giron pulled a three-set comeback against Ilya Marchenko 4-6, 6-4, 7-6.

In the battle of the Belorussians, Ilya Ivashka beat Egor Gerasimov in straight sets 7-5, 6-4. Meanwhile, Jenson Brooksby avenged a loss to the South African Kevin Anderson by beating him in straight sets 7-5, 6-3.

Andreas Seppi needed three sets to dispatch Yasutka Uchiyama of Japan 3-6, 7-5, 6-3, Ricardas Berankis beat the American qualifier Mitchell Kreuger in straight sets 7-6, 6-2, and Daniel Elahi Galan beat another American Tommy Paul in straight sets 6-4, 6-3.

Finally, in the last match of the day an American favourite, Jack Sock advanced to round two after his Japanese opponent Yoshito Nishioka was forced to retire due to injury during their match.

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