Sharapova wins first match in return from doping ban
STUTTGART, GERMANY | Maria Sharapova won her first match on her return from a 15-month doping ban, beating Roberta Vinci 7-5, 6-3 in the opening round of the Porsche Grand Prix on Wednesday.
The five-time Grand Slam champion and former No. 1 was earlier given a lukewarm welcome by 4,500 spectators, receiving a polite applause and some whistling when she entered the sold-out arena. After a shaky start and conceding seven of the first eight points, Sharapova settled and showed flashes of her old self.
It was the Russian’s first match since losing to Serena Williams in the quarterfinals of the 2016 Australian Open, and her first match on clay in nearly two years.
Last year, Sharapova tested positive for the banned substance meldonium.