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A Long Climb Back to the Top

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Sharapova must prove herself after being suspended for 15 months.

Daniel Maurer

After being suspended from competitive tennis for 15 months after a failed controversial drug test, Maria Sharapova can begin playing tennis competitively again in April.

That was the ruling of the Court of Arbitration for Sport on Tuesday, after hearing an appeal from Sharapova in September over her original two-year doping suspension. The court reduced Sharapova’s suspension to 15 months after determining that she acted with “no significant fault.”

While many find the Court’s ruling to be controversial by trying to judge her actions as to whether she broke the rules on purpose or not, those are ones that look at it with only black and white or failed and passed.

Since Sharapova has not played competitive tennis in 15 months, she is currently unranked and will have to rebuild her ranking from scratch. Given her prior success, such as formerly being ranked number one in the world and winning five Grand Slam titles, she will receive a wildcard ranking in the French Open; which means she will get an automatic bid. It does however mean she will have a tougher road to advance to finals. But this event has been where Sharapova has seen a good amount of career success, her climb back to the top starts May 22.

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A Long Climb Back to the Top