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Maria Sharapova plans to appeal 'unfairly harsh' two-year suspension for doping

Maria Sharapova plans to appeal 'unfairly harsh' two-year suspension for doping

Maria Sharapova has been suspended two years after testing positive for a banned substance in January, the International Tennis Federation announced Wednesday.

In its ruling, the organization said it had determined that the five-time Grand Slam champion hadn’t taken meldonium with the intention of cheating, but that nonetheless she "does bear sole responsibility for the contravention, and very significant fault."

Sharapova, 29, has said she first was prescribed the drug for medical reasons in 2006 and that she did not realize it had been banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency as of Jan. 1 this year.

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