Sharapova set to return after 15-month doping ban

Maria Sharapova is back on court on Wednesday in the Stuttgart Open.

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Sharapova set to return after 15-month doping ban

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Maria Sharapova returns to action on Wednesday evening after a 15-month doping ban for testing positive for Meldonium.

The former world number one has received a wild card for the Stuttgart Open, a controversial decision that’s split many in the game.

Some say the five-times grand slam champion doesn’t deserve the red carpet treatment and should have been forced to work her way back.

One of the critics is her opponent at Stuttgart, Italian Roberta Vinci: “I think that she can return to play but without any wild cards, any help but just to play and for me probably she would play two tournaments, three tournaments – top 30 for sure.”

Sharapova last played back in October at a charity event but Stuttgart marks her competitive return. If she wins the tournament she will qualify for the French Open. If not, the organisers say they may also invite her to play.