Maria Sharapova to be reinstated as UN goodwill ambassador once drug ban ends

She is due back on court next April

Maria Sharapova to be reinstated as UN goodwill ambassador once drug ban ends

Image: Damian Dovarganes / AP/Press Association Images

Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova is due to be reinstated to her role as a goodwill ambassador for the UN once her ban for taking performance enhancing drugs ends.

According to the Guardian, once her suspension ends next April, she will be free to resume her position with the UN Development Programme - which works to end poverty and inequality.

A spokesperson told the Guardian: “UNDP was glad to learn that Maria Sharapova can return to the sport she loves sooner than expected and we will lift the suspension of her role as our goodwill ambassador once the reduced ban expires in April 2017.”

“We understand that Ms Sharapova will be focused on resuming her tennis career and we look forward to discussing her role and engagement with UNDP at an appropriate date.”

The Russian has been keen to keep in the public eye despite the shame of being banned for cheating. Her initial two year sentence has since been reduced to 15 months after an appeal to the court of arbitration for sport.

She completed her career Grand Slam by winning the 2012 French Open to add to her previous successes at Wimbledon, the US Open and the Australian Open.