Embattled ATP board member Justin Gimelstob told the New York Times Wednesday that he is stepping down down from his position immediately, with six months remaining in his three-year term.
The ATP Tour Player Council will vote on its “Americas representative” to the board on May 14 in Rome.
Gimelstob, 42, has held that position since 2008, and his three-year term was to expire at the end of the year.
But despite all of the attention and fallout subsequent to his “no contest” plea to a charge of felony battery April 22, there had been no indication he would not stand again.
“I’m stepping down because my job is to work on the sport’s behalf and the players’ behalf and in my situation, I’ve become too much of a distraction and a liability. I take responsibility for that, and I take responsibility for the mistakes I made Halloween night,” Gimelstob told Christopher Clarey of the Times.
A statement was released Wednesday.
“Step away and regroup”
The judge in Gimelstob’s case reduced the battery charge to a misdemeanor. He was sentenced to three years’ probation and 60 days of community labour. He also was ordered to undergo 52 weeks of anger management counselling, something he had already begun before the judge’s mandate.
According to the Times story, Gimelstob is in Spain, where he travelled to tell Player Council president Novak Djokovic in person that he was stepping down.
“I wanted to look Novak in the eye, and the two most important things I wanted to say were first, ‘thank you’ and second to apologize,” Gimelstob told the Times.