Maria Sharapova has tested positive for the drug meldonium. A drug added to the list of the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) in January, 2016. While not even being treated as Sport Supplements for years, meldonium ended up on the list of banned substances by the WADA because it can act as a metabolic modulator.
Maria Sharapova, the cheater
While a lot of fans stood behind Maria Sharapova, a lot of tennis players weren’t charmed or impressed by her press conference.
In an interview with Le Parisien, Kristina Mladenovic called Sharapova a cheater and said she wasn’t the only one on the tour to call Sharapova a cheat.
“All the other players are saying she’s a cheater,” she said. “You sure doubt and think that she didn’t deserve all she won until now. That’s dreadful, but it’s good that it’s finally out. As far as I am concerned if I take an aspirin I worry 10 times about what I do. She’s been taking this drug for 10 years and it’s a serious drug. She has played with the rules and thought, if it’s not banned, then I can take it. For me that’s very disappointing. I don’t like the mentality to be the best by playing with the rules.”
Dominika Cibulkova takes it a step further and calls Sharapova arrogant, conceited and cold.
“I was surprised that most of the reactions were so diplomatic, because everyone’s opinion is actually totally different,” said Cibulkova, according to a translation of the interview shared by several media outlets.
Sharapova did not act against the spirit of the sport
But there are some who defend Maria Sharapova. British Olympian, Susan Egelstaff, says that Sharapova’s falsely accused of acting the against the spirit of the sport.
“When Maria Sharapova tested positive for meldonium the backlash was immediate and fierce,” Egelstaff told The Mixed Zone website.
“The outcry focused more on the fact she had been taking meldonium, reportedly prescribed by a doctor for a decade without an apparent medical need for the drug, rather than the fact she failed a doping test.
“The morality police were out in force, decrying Sharapova for taking a drug for its performance-enhancing qualities,” added Egelstaff, a Commonwealth Games bronze medallist in 2006.
“This condemnation amazed and frankly stupefied me. There was a remarkable number of people who believed themselves qualified to judge what is morally acceptable in sport.”
What do we think? We are kind of hoping that Sharapova’s ban will end sooner rather than later. We need someone to carry the sport and she does an exceptional job of doing so.