Maria Sharapova has filed an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport seeking to annul or reduce her two-year suspension for a failed drug test at the Australian Open in January. The parties have agreed to an expedited track for the case, which will allow CAS to issue its decision no later than July 18th, 2016.
Last week, an independent tribunal appointed by the International Tennis Federation found that Sharapova committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation, and imposed a period of ineligibility of two years. Under the tribunal's decision, Sharapova would be allowed to return on January 27, 2018.
According to a statement from CAS regarding Sharapova's appeal, "Ms. Sharapova seeks the annulment of the Tribunal's decision to sanction her with a two-year period of ineligibility further to an anti-doping rule violation. Ms. Sharapova submits that the period of ineligibility should be eliminated, or in the alternative, reduced."
CAS further confirmed the parties have not decided whether or not a hearing would be held on appeal. However, "at the request of the parties, this arbitration procedure will be kept confidential and the CAS will not comment any further on this matter."