Harsh! But is it over the line?
Maria Sharapova was once the highest paid female athlete in the world, but after announcing she failed a drug test during the Australian Open on Monday, her tennis career could now be in jeopardy!
The 28-year-old Olympic silver medalist's suspension goes into effect on March 12 and she's already been dropped to varying degrees by Nike, Porsche, and TAG Heuer, but now the people behind the decision to make Meldonium an illegal performance enhancing drug in 2016 are speaking out against her.
Related: Russian Speed Skater Fails Test For Same Drug As Maria
Former World Anti-Doping Agency president Dick Pound spoke quite critically of Maria's scandal to the BBC on Tuesday, saying:
"Running a $30 million business depends on you staying eligible to play tennis. You are taking something on a list, which you have known about for four months. I am sorry, that is a big mistake — of course she should have known.
Any time there is a change to the list, notice is given on 30 September prior to the change. You have October, November, December to get off what you are doing.
All the tennis players were given notification of it and she has a medical team somewhere. That is reckless beyond description."
This IS only the 69th day Meldonium has been illegal in the decade she's been taking the drug — so it's certainly possible it slipped by her. Right?
Related: Ben Foster Took Performance Enhancing Drugs FOR REAL To Prepare For Lance Armstrong Movie!
Grindeks, the company that makes the drug in question, released a statement to the Associated Press on Wednesday clarifying Meldonium's ideal dosage, saying:
"Depending on the patient's health condition, treatment course of Meldonium preparations may vary from four to six weeks. Treatment course can be repeated twice or thrice a year.
Only physicians can follow and evaluate patient's health condition and state whether the patient should use Meldonium for a longer period of time."
So does it not make sense she would have taken the drug so long without a doctor telling her it's banned?
Hopefully the suspension will teach Maria to pay closer attention to what she's putting in her system — if it doesn't end her entire career.
Do U think Maria deserves all the hate she's getting for failing the drug test??
[Image via Maria Sharapova/Instagram.]
Tags: controversy, dick pound, drugs, manufacturer's grindeks, maria sharapova, medicine, olympics, tennis, wada, world anti-doping agency, zportz