Maria Sharapova is officially a tennis player again from Wednesday. The Russian was allowed to practice on Porsche Arena a few hours before her come back to tennis in the late afternoon against Roberta Vinci. In press conference several players spoke about her, including Simona Halep.
All agreed that it was not right to award Sharapova with a wild card: 'For the kids, for the young players, it is not OK to help with a wild card the player that was banned for doping. It is not about Maria Sharapova here, but it is about all the players that are found doped.
I cannot support what the tournament director did, but also I cannot judge,' said Halep. Interviewed by L'Equipe, Alizé Cornet said: 'Generally speaking, I find it shameful that the WTA is promoting a player who tested positive after all.
It's normal that people talk about her, she's an immense champion, but from there to promoting her return to such an extent. I find that unjust. I hope that (French Tennis Federation) president Bernard Guidicelli holds firm on what he initially said and doesn't offer her a wildcard for Roland Garros.
'A player who has tested positive should start from scratch like everyone else and win her place back. You shouldn't roll out the red carpet for her', she added. "Unfortunately tennis remains a business, but, morally, it's not good', added Cornet.
Karolina Pliskova thinks the same thing: 'Definitely it's a big thing for this tournament, not only for Stuttgart but for all the tournaments that are going to be next. From the tournaments' side it's a big plus.
Obviously when Serena is going to be out now, tennis definitely needs a star like (Sharapova) is so I don't have anything against it.' Speaking in a press conference as WTA Finals promoter, Kim Clijsters said: 'She has done her punishment.
I was disappointed and surprised when the news came out but she's had the career that she's had and I don't think she needs to be punished more. It's up to the tournaments whoever they want to give a wild card or not..I am sure it was really tough for her to be on the sideline for that long.
But in a week's time this news will be over and she will be back playing normally, and probably some of her best tennis.' Agnieszka Radwanska commented on Max ´No wild cards for Sharapova´ Maria´s agent has a STRONG answer about her after criticizing a lot Sharapova: 'Who's Max? Who is this guy? It's not only me having the same thoughts, so what can I add?" ALSO READ: WTA Stuttgart tournament director: '90 per cent of the crowd comes to watch Kerber, not Sharapova'