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Verdict on Sharapova's doping appeal set for October

Johannesburg [South Africa], Sept.13: The verdict on Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova's appeal against her two-year doping ban will be issued in the first week of October, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) said.

Earlier in June, Sharapova was handed a two-year suspension by a three-member Tennis Anti-Doping Program Tribunal appointed by the International Tennis Federation, after being tested positive for the banned substance meldonium during January's Australian Open this year.

Meldonium was placed on the banned list by the World Anti-Doping Agency this year.

The 2012 Olympic silver medallist, however, said that she had been taking the drug since 2006 legally for years due to health concerns.

The original ruling was expected to take place in July, with the five-time Grand Slam winner hoping that a successful appeal would allow her to spearhead the Russian tennis team in the recently-concluded Rio Olympics.

However, the ruling was postponed after both parties asked for additional time in order to respond to their respective evidentiary submissions and several scheduling conflicts. (ANI)