The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) confirmed Tuesday that Sharapova is appealing the suspension for using meldonium, She asked “that the period of ineligibility should be eliminated, or in the alternative, reduced.” At the request of the parties, this arbitration procedure will be kept confidential. The appeal will be by July 18.
Sharapova claimed she had been taking meldonium since 2006 for heart issues, a magnesium deficiency and because her family has a history of diabetes. She also said that she simply failed to read an email that stated meldonium, which can boost endurance and aid physical recovery, would be added to the banned list on Jan. 1, 2016. A statement from Sharapova’s lawyer said the ITF’s tribunal verdict reflected the player “did not intend to violate the rules”. The 29-year-old Sharapova's ban is due to end on Jan. 25, 2018 but if the suspension is thrown out, Sharapova would be eligible to compete at the Rio Games, which open Aug. 5. In fact, Maria Sharapova's future in tennis could be decided next week.