Top-ranked Argentine Diego Schwartzman insists there is no reason to fix matches in tennis. Schwartzman's fellow compatriot and good friend Nicolas Kicker is currently serving a suspension after being found guilty for match-fixing.
In June 2018, Kicker was banned for six years but three of those six years were suspended. Kicker, 27, reportedly arranged the results of two Challenger matches in 2015. Last month, the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) further reduced Kicker's ban for four months.
The 27-year-old Argentine will now be eligible to return to competing on January 23, 2021. "There is no reasons to fix matches. It kills the sport. I like Nicolas Kicker, he kept training, hope he learnt from the mistake.
He is a good friend, I like his family, hope he comes back but that's one of the worst things you can do in sports," Schwartzman said of Kicker, per Jose Morgado. Kicker enjoyed a breakthrough season in 2017. The Argentine enjoyed success on the Challenger Tour and made three quarterfinals at the ATP level events.
As a result of his good performances in 2017, Kicker achieved a career-high ranking of No. 78 in the world. The Argentine then made a good start to the 2018 season as he made the Australian Open third round in his maiden draw debut at Melbourne Park.
Kicker was banned just before the start of the French Open as he picked up a first round loss in Lyon the week before Roland Garros. Kicker will certainly be motivated to make the most out of the second opportunity when he makes a comeback.