An appeal panel appointed under the Code of Sports-related Arbitration of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (“CAS”) has reduced the sanction imposed on Maria Sharapova by an Independent Tribunal on 8 June 2016 from 24 months to 15 months. The results and prize money that Ms. Sharapova earned at the 2016 Australian Open remain disqualified. Her period of ineligibility will now end at midnight on 25 April 2017.
Ms. Sharapova, a 29-year-old player from Russia, provided a urine sample on 26 January 2016 that was found to contain meldonium, which is prohibited under section S4 (Hormone and Metabolic Modulators) of the 2016 WADA Prohibited List. She admitted her consequent violation of the Tennis Anti-Doping Programme, and noted that the meldonium was the active ingredient of a medication, Mildronate, that she had been taking for ten years, and that she had not realised it had been added to the Prohibited List as from 1 January 2016.