Nike suspends ties with Maria Sharapova after failed drug test

ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 08, 2016 02:38 PM
Nike suspends ties with Sharapova after failed drug test
Nike has suspended its ties with former world number 1 Maria Sharapova while her case is still under investigation. (AP)

Nike has suspended its ties with Maria Sharapova after the Russian tennis champion said in a press conference that she failed a drug test right after the Australian Open.

In a statement, Nike said that it is "saddened and surprised by the news about Maria Sharapova."

The partnership between the former world number 1 and the Swoosh brand is temporarily on hold while the case is being investigated.

Sharapova, winner of five Grand Slams, came out earlier today saying that she failed a drug test for taking Meldonium.

She has been taking the drug through legal prescription since 2006 for various health reasons. However, the Latvian-produce drug has been banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) effective Jan. 1 this year.

"I made a huge mistake. I let my fans down and I let the sport down. I take full responsibility for it," Sharapova said.

The 28-year-old star is the world's highest-paid woman in sports. She made $29.5 million in 2015 according to Forbes.

Sharapova is likewise provisionally suspended starting March 12 as the International Tennis Federation investigates the case.

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