The Tennis Integrity Unit has handed down its decision on the case of Nicolas Kicker.
Kicker was suspended for six years and fined $25,000 for committing match-fixing offenses.
Half of that suspension – three years – is suspended “on the basis that Mr Kicker commits no further breaches of the Program.”
It’s backdated to May 24, the day the 25-year-old Argentine was first banned from playing tennis.
Right before this year’s French Open, it was announced that an independent Anti-Corruption Hearing officer ruled that Kicker was guilty of fixing matches at two Challenger tournaments. The hearing was held in Miami on March 20, 2018 during the Miami Open.
One of the matches took place in Padova, Italy in June, 2015 and the other in Baranquilla, Colombia in September of that year.
He also was nailed for “failing to fully cooperate” with the investigation.
A full-time ATP Tour player in ’18
Back then, aged 22-23, Kicker was ranked around No. 135 in the world. He played just one ATP-level match all season, a first-round qualifying match in Sao Paulo. His earnings for the entire year checked in at just under $50,000.
A stylish player with a nifty one-handed backhand, his fortunes had improved. Kicker reached his career-best of No. 78 after the 2017 French Open.
He had qualified and reached the quarterfinals in Lyon the week before (beating Dustin Brown and Nick Kyrgios along the way) and won a round in Paris.
This week, Kicker ranked exactly No. 100 after he could not defend those points from a year ago – or any others for the foreseeable future.
He has earned more than $600,000 on court since the beginning of 2017. This season, he had been a full-time player at the ATP Tour level.
At just 25, you can’t say his career is definitively over. But a three-year layoff is a crusher.