PR Week: PRs praise Maria Sharapova for controlling message after failed drugs test

PR professionals say tennis ace Maria Sharapova and her team had "followed the crisis playbook to the letter" in announcing that she had failed a drugs test and would be banned from the sport.

The Russian former world number one, also an ambassador for or the face of a number of global brands including her own range of sweets, called a press conference in the US yesterday.

At the conference, she announced that she had failed a drugs test in January, as a result of the drug meldonium, which she had been taking on the advice of a doctor since 2006. The drug was recently added to the list of banned substances.

David Alexander, managing director of Calacus Public Relations and a former national football writer, said: "She’s followed the crisis playbook to the letter, fronting up for a press conference, explaining why the oversight occurred and in no way trying to absolve herself of her responsibilities to compete cleanly."

Alexander went on to say that he suspected Sharapova would "bounce back sooner rather than later" - and followers of PRWeek UK on Twitter have also said they are not writing the star off yet.

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