Maria Sharapova, the alleged world’s highest earning female athlete, exposed herself as a consumer of a the newly banned drug, medium.
What is Meldonium?
Meldonium, although not approved for use or sale by the FDA in the United States, is a medication used for the treatment of heart conditions. It is, however, sold and approved in Russia and other Soviet Union countries.
The banned drug is manufactured by a Latvian pharmaceutical company called Grindeks,
Despite its original construction to treat heart conditions, Meldonium can allegedly be used as an ability enhancer. According to Grindeks, the drug “is widely used for the treatment of different heart and vascular diseases, as well as for the improvement of work capacity of healthy people at physical and mental overloads and during rehabilitation period,”
Herein lies the problem, The World Anti-Doping Agency banned Meldonium as of Jan. 1, 2016, however, Sharapova claims to not have received the memo.
On Monday, Sharapova announced to the public that she failed a drug test for Meldonium at the Australian Open which was back in January. In fact, it might have even been just days after the drug was banned.
There were many before her,,
Numerous professional athletes have failed a drug test, it is not uncommon. As a matter of fact, Ekaterina Bobrova (Russian ice skater) a pair of Ukrainian biathletes, Pavel Kulizhnikov (Russian speed skater), and Eduard Vorganov (Russian cyclist) have all tested positive for Meldonium. However, it is the approach thereafter that catches the media in a frenzy and throws their career in an uproar.
Maria Sharapova took a brave step, she simply went public and took accountability for her actions. She essentially put her career in the hands of the International Tennis Federation.
During a conference in Los Angeles, Sharapova told the press “I made a huge mistake. I let my fans down and I let the sport down, I take full responsibility“
Nike, Porsche, and Swiss watch brand Tag Heuer have all “suspended their support” to the leading lady of tennis. Even her candy shop in Wimbledon is allegedly being hexed by nutritionists.
Although Sharapova is of Russian descent, she resides here in the United States. Meldonium was available for sale legally online prior to its ban. Sharapova reported having been a longtime user of the drug for the treatment of various illnesses including early signs of diabetes and “irregular” echocardiography exam results.
The former 5 time Grand Slam winner could possibly face a lengthy ban and a jeopardized career.