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Tomic fined $15K and loses racket sponsor after Wimbledon outburst

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LONDON — Bernard Tomic was fined $15,000 at Wimbledon and dropped by his racket sponsor Thursday – not for something he did during his first-round loss, but for what he said during a news conference afterward.

The penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct was announced two days after the 24-year-old Australian was beaten by Mischa Zverev 6-4, 6-3, 6-4, then spoke to the media about feeling “a little bit bored out there.”

Tomic also said Tuesday that he “just couldn’t find any motivation” to compete this year and acknowledged that when he called for a medical timeout against Zverev, he did so not because of an injury issue but to “try to break a bit of momentum.”

Racket maker Head issued a statement via its Twitter feed on Thursday saying: “We were extremely disappointed with the statements made at Wimbledon by one of our sponsored athletes, Bernard Tomic. His opinions in no way reflect our own attitude for tennis, our passion, professionalism and respect for the game.”

The statement concluded: “Therefore, we have decided to discontinue our collaboration with Bernard Tomic.”

The fine amounts to more than a third of Tomic’s prize money: First-round losers at the All England Club this year earn 35,000 pounds (about $45,000).

Tomic has not reached the quarterfinals at a Grand Slam tournament since losing at that stage at Wimbledon against eventual champion Novak Djokovic in 2011. That year, at age 18, Tomic became the youngest man to reach the quarterfinals at the All England Club since 1986, when Boris Becker won the title.

Tomic reached a high of No. 17 in the ATP rankings in 2016; he entered Wimbledon at No. 59.

“I feel holding a trophy or, you know, doing well – it doesn’t satisfy me anymore,” Tomic said Tuesday. “It’s not there. I couldn’t care less if I make a fourth round (at the) U.S. Open or I lose (in the) first round. To me, everything is the same. I’m going to play another 10 years, and I know after my career I won’t have to work again.”

Also losing a chunk of change for unsportsmanlike conduct at Wimbledon was Daniil Medvedev of Russia, who threw a handful coins in the direction of the chair umpire after a second-round loss Wednesday. Medvedev was given three fines totaling $14,500 – $4,000 for a code violation warning during the match, $3,000 for earning a point penalty later and $7,500 for his conduct after the match.

The 49th-ranked Medvedev repeatedly apologized during his news conference, saying he was not trying to imply that umpire Mariana Alves was biased.

“I was just disappointed and (did) a stupid thing,” said Medvedev, who earned headlines for a decidedly different reason Monday, beating three-time major champion Stan Wawrinka in the first round.

When his 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 2-6, 6-3 loss to Ruben Bemelmans ended, Medvedev shook hands with his opponent and Alves. But then he grabbed his wallet from his bag and tossed the coins toward the bottom of the official’s chair.

Nastase banned from Fed Cup and Davis Cup until 2019

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LONDON — Ilie Nastase has been banned from the Fed Cup and Davis Cup until 2019 because of his foul-mouthed comments and bad behavior as Romania’s captain during a Fed Cup match against Britain.

In addition to the ban, the International Tennis Federation said Friday the 1973 French Open champion will not be able to work in an official capacity for a further two years, until 2021.

The 71-year-old Nastase was also fined $10,000. He has three weeks to appeal the decision.

“Mr. Nastase made a comment about Serena Williams’s unborn child that was highly inappropriate and racially insensitive,” the ITF said.

Nastase also “made advances of a sexual nature towards Anne Keothavong, the captain of the Great Britain team” and “made abusive and threatening comments to the match officials and to members of the Great Britain team.”

Although he will have to sit out ITF events, the ban does not apply to Grand Slam, ATP or WTA tournaments, which are not under the governing body’s jurisdiction.

Nastase was provisionally suspended in April after he speculated about the skin color of the baby that Williams is expecting and for outbursts during a Fed Cup match between Romania and Britain.

He previously acknowledged making mistakes and having shortcomings, but stressed “the cause I fight for is tennis, the sport I really love, which I cannot separate from my life.”

As Fed Cup captain, Nastase hurled abuse at British player Johanna Konta, Keothavong and the umpire. The referee ejected Nastase.

Nastase, a former top-ranked player, was barred from the French Open and was not invited to the Royal Box at Wimbledon, where he was a two-time finalist.

More AP tennis coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/apf-Tennis

World Cup of Tennis put on hold for at least a year

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LONDON–The International Tennis Federation is putting off its proposal for a World Cup of Tennis Finals for another year.

The ITF said last month it wanted to combine next year’s Davis Cup and Fed Cup finals into one event to raise the profile of the two national team competitions. But on Thursday, the governing body said it would not put the motion to a vote at its annual general meeting next month in Vietnam.

Other proposals, such as reducing the men’s matches to best-of-three sets and possibly skipping the final match of the series if it is already decided, will still go before member nations for ratification at the Aug. 4 meeting in Ho Chi Minh City.

“We promised change and are already delivering change with a significant series of reforms,” ITF President David Haggerty said in a statement. “Taking another year to build consensus around the World Cup of Tennis Finals will allow us to finalize an even stronger recommendation to the AGM.”

Last month, the ITF said it wanted to start staging the World Cup of Tennis in November 2018 in Geneva. The Swiss city was to host the event for three years at its 18,000-seat Palexpo.

The ITF said then that it had made the announcement of the host city well in advance in an effort to follow the successful model used by the Super Bowl and Champions League final.

But that has now been put on hold as the governing body tries to sell its idea to its voting members.

“This decision shows that we do not act unilaterally,” Haggerty said, “and are working with all our stakeholders to find the best solution for tennis.”

Haggerty also announced the creation of a World Cup of Tennis Finals task force. Board members Katrina Adams and Bernard Giudicelli have been appointed as co-chairs.

“The World Cup of Tennis Finals will unlock considerable new revenue for investing back into the sport through the ITF’s member nations,” Haggerty said. “Investment in the development of the next generation remains the priority of the ITF and its national associations.”