The Grand Slam Board has laid down a major fine on combustible Italian Fabio Fognini for his behavior at the US Open.
The decision was made Monday, but only released publicly Wednesday.
It was determined that Fognini was guilty of two major offenses: Aggravated Behaviour, and Conduct Contrary to the Integrity of the Game.
The 30-year-old was fined $96,000 US, in addition to the $24,000 he already was assessed on-site during the tournament. If he manages not to be convicted of any other Major Offence through to the end of 2019, that $96,000 will be reduced by 50 per cent.
Most crucially, though, Fognini will be suspended from two Grand Slam tournaments (one of the the US Open). Except … if he keeps it clean through the end of 2019, that suspension will be waived.
This being a “Grand Slam” thing, of course, there is no impact on his play during the regular ATP Tour events.
He is in the third round in singles in Shanghai, and will face Rafael Nadal Thursday night.
Fognini had five business days to appeal the decision. The press release indicates he won’t.
“He has expressed remorse for his admitted misconduct. He has confidence that he will meet the conditions necessary to reduce his financial penalty and to lift his Grand Slam tournament suspensions in the future,” it stated.
In other words, he has to write a big check. And he has to watch his back for the next two years-plus. Otherwise, he’ll miss a couple of majors.
His initial reaction (since deleted) tells you he’s fully aware that it’s barely a slap on the wrist.
Fabio Fognini's not-so-cryptic post on Instagram story after he was handed a potential $96,000 fine. ? pic.twitter.com/qJY2STqymy
— Nikhila (@kokudum) October 11, 2017
It’ll be pretty interesting to see whether or not he can curb his baser instincts.
Specific instances of “Aggravated Behaviour” include:
*Playing another event after being entered in a Slam, if the circumstances are flagrant and particularly injurious, once. otherwise, twice.
*Lack of best efforts
*Failure to complete match (unless reasonably unable to do so).
Here are the relevant passages in the Grand Slam rulebook.