Maria Sharapova Makes a Comeback: The ‘Doll’ Returns, but Don’t Expect Red Carpet Treatment

After more than a year of being banned from competition due to a doping scandal, Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova will officially return to professional tennis with the WTA 250 Stuttgart Open. After this tournament, Maria Sharapova was also given the green light to compete at the Madrid Open and Rome Masters and even the Grand Slam French Open.

Besides the “bad reputation” related to the doping scandal, the way Maria Sharapova returned has been facing a lot of opposition from her colleagues.

Maria Sharapova trở lại: Búp bê đừng mong được trải thảm đỏ - Ảnh 1.

It’s been a long time since the audience heard Maria Sharapova scream on the court

Accordingly, Maria Sharapova’s ban will not expire until April 26, but the Russian tennis player has been favored by the organizers to attend the Stuttgart Open, the tournament opening on April 24.

Before this move, world No. 4 female tennis player Dominika Cibulkova criticized the Stuttgart Open organizers for “bending” the rules to favor Maria Sharapova . This can create bad precedents later.

Not only Dominika Cibulkova, a series of both male and female tennis players such as: Caroline Wozniacki, Andy Murray, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga have also criticized the way Maria Sharapova returned to tennis after the doping scandal. All believe that this favor could send a “dangerous” message in the future.

Maria Sharapova trở lại: Búp bê đừng mong được trải thảm đỏ - Ảnh 2.

Dominika Cibulkova believes that the Stuttgart Open organizers’ favor towards Maria Sharapova could create a bad precedent in the future

“Maria Sharapova deserves to be given a second chance. However, this player should not return this way. Favoring Maria Sharapova is disrespect from the Stuttgart Open organizers to other players” , said former world No. 1 Wozniacki.

Previously, Maria Sharapova was banned by the World Tennis Federation due to a test sample at the 2016 Australian Open testing positive for a banned substance called meldonium. Explaining this scandal, Maria Sharapova said she did not know that meldonium was on the list of substances banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency because this substance had just been updated.

Maria Sharapova trở lại: Búp bê đừng mong được trải thảm đỏ - Ảnh 3.

Maria Sharapova has been banned from competition for 15 months by the World Tennis Federation due to a doping scandal (Photo: NBC)

Maria Sharapova also admitted that she made a mistake because she refused to open an email sent from the World Anti-Doping Agency about the updated list of banned substances in 2016.

Initially, Maria Sharapova was banned from competing for 2 years by the World Tennis Federation. However, after a complaint, the ban on Maria Sharapova was reduced to 15 months. This ban will officially expire on April 26.

During her playing career, Maria Sharapova has won 5 Grand Slam championships and 35 WTA titles.

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