Maria Sharapova’s return to tennis from a doping ban is still more than five weeks away but the Russian is generating quite the buzz during the ongoing BNP Paribas Open in California.
Players including men’s No. 1 Andy Murray, seven-time grand slam winner Venus Williams, twice grand slam winner Angelique Kerber and former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki have all weighed in on whether the five-time grand slam winner and one of the world’s most recognizable athletes should benefit from wildcards as she tries to rebuild her tennis career.

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The latter duo have also questioned whether the 29-year-old should be allowed to make her much anticipated comeback at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix — Wozniacki said the rules were “twisted and turned” for Sharapova — which may have led to the women’s WTA tour clarifying the rules Monday.

‘Eligible’

Sharapova is allowed to compete on April 26 following a 15-month suspension for testing positive for meldonium at the 2016 Australian Open. That day falls on a Wednesday, three days into the clay-court event in Stuttgart where Sharapova did receive a wildcard.