Miami Open director James Blake fined for betting sponsorship

James Blake fined for betting sponsorship violation

Miami Open tournament director and former top-ranked player James Blake has been fined $56,250 for violating tennis regulations regarding betting sponsorships, according to the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA). The London-based agency stated that the violation was unintentional and noted Blake’s full cooperation with the investigation. Blake faces an 18-month probation period, during which any further rule infractions could result in an 18-month suspension and an additional fine of $131,250.

Tennis prohibits individuals from having commercial ties with gambling companies. In a similar incident in 2022, U.S. Davis Cup team coaches Mardy Fish and Bob Bryan were each fined $10,000 for promoting a gambling operator on social media.

ITIA CEO Karen Moorhouse emphasized that the case revolves more around perception than corruption. The rules apply universally to players, coaches, officials, and accredited tournament staff, all of whom have the potential to influence outcomes or access inside information.

Since 2018, Blake has served as the tournament director of the Miami Open, which is scheduled to take place next month. He retired from professional tennis in 2013, boasting 10 singles titles, a career-best ATP ranking of No. 4, and appearances in the quarterfinals of three Grand Slam tournaments. Before turning professional in 1999, Blake attended Harvard University. Notably, he contributed to the United States’ victory over Russia in the 2007 Davis Cup final, securing the country’s most recent title in that team event.

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