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Genie Bouchard Accuses Maria Sharapova of Cheating, Stressing she Should Be Banned for Life

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“[Sharapova is] a cheater and I don’t think that a cheater in any sports should be allowed to play that sport again.” These are the harsh words directed at top Russian tennis player and five Grand Slam titleholder Maria Sharapova by Canadian tennis pro, Eugenie “Genie” Bouchard, after being asked about the controversial return of her “tennis idol” in an interview from the Istanbul Cup.

Maria Sharapova

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The International Tennis Federation (ITF) suspended Sharapova from playing tennis starting March 12, 2016, after the latter tested positive for meldonium, a drug that was added to the banned substances list of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) only weeks before Sharapova’s drug test.

While Maria Sharapova admitted to failing the drug test, she argued that she has been taking meldonium for the past 10 years for medical purposes and that she did not get any information that said drug has been banned for use in sport. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on October 4, 2016, reduced Sharapova’s initial 24-month suspension to 15 months, ruling that:

“Ms. Sharapova committed an anti-doping rule violation and that while it was with ‘no significant fault’, she bore some degree of fault, for which sanctioned of 15 months is appropriate”

Maria Sharapova

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While Sharapova’s doping controversy caused a great distaste among other players, the brutally frank message of Bouchard is apparently in response to the wild cards received by Sharapova from Stuttgart, Madrid, and Rome.

For Bouchard, letting Sharapova play again is, “so unfair to the other players who do it the right way and are true” adding that “it sends the wrong message to young kids – cheat and we’ll welcome you back with open arms.”

Eugene Bouchard vs. Maria Sharapova

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It is important to stress that Bouchard’s position that Sharapova should be banned for life after failing a drug test once is very unlikely to happen considering that such strict ruling is non-existent in any major sport today.

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