Back in February, La Nación broke the story about Argentina’s Marco Trungelliti and his courage in coming forth to blow the lid off a match-fixing organization in his native land.
More recently, an English-language story by the Associated Press two weeks ago gave Trungelliti’s story more widespread attention.
It chronicled the treatment he has received at the hands of his peers. And it went into how he’s been accused of being a snitch – and worse.
To that end, the Tennis Integrity Unit issued a statement late Wednesday in London. Belatedly, it offered its full support relative to Trungelliti’s cooperation.
The statement indicated that it has not confirmed or commented on Trungelliti’s involvement in the prosecution of three of his countrymen because of its “confidentiality policy.”
“The Tennis Integrity Unit’s intention is at all times to protect the identity of witnesses,” the statement said.
“The highest level of integrity”
But in the wake of the criticism Trungelliti has received and the questioning of his motives for cooperating, it wrote the following:
“The TIU unreservedly condemns the treatment received by Mr Trungelliti. And it would like to place on record its appreciation of his support and full compliance with the TACP. The TIU also wishes to confirm the facts surrounding his involvement:
*Mr Trungelliti voluntarily reported a corrupt approach he received from a third party to the TIU, in line with the agreement contained in the TACP, which is signed by all professional tennis players
*At no point has Mr Trungelliti ever been the subject of any investigation, charge or sanction by the TIU
*He received no payment for the information he provided. And he has never requested or been offered any kind of plea bargain or other agreement with the TIU.”
The statement adds that Trungelliti “has acted with the highest level of integrity and with the best interests of the sport in mind. His courageous and principled stand against those who seek to corrupt is to be admired and commended.”
Better late than never. But kind of late. The AP story came out two weeks ago.
Trungelliti retired during a Challenger match in early April. And he withdrew before his final-round qualifying match in Monte Carlo several weeks ago, because of a recurring back issue.
He has not played since. But regardless of all the recent attention, he would have arrived at the French Open with a disproportionate amount of attention for a qualifier.
The Argentine’s Roland Garros Road Trip saga with his grandmother was one of the feel-good moments of last year’s event. And so it would have made him a subject of interest, one year later.