New controversies take place at the ATP board after the departure of Chris Kermode as the ATP Chief. Justin Gimelstob, a former tennis player could find himself permanently removed from the ATP board after his involvement in a high profile criminal case.
A vote will take place on May 14 about the future of Justin Gimelstob. Gimelstob has pleaded no contest to an assault against his former friend Randall Kaplan in Los Angeles in October 2018. He pleaded neither guilty nor not guilty for the allegations on him.
Despite being involved in such a high-profile case, Gimelstob was allowed to keep hold of his position at the ATP board till now. He was even present during the vote out of Chris Kermode as ATP Chief. The question is, Is it ethical to give a person so much power who has been involved in a criminal case? According to Justin, he is allowed to hold his position simply because he is good at it.
“This sounds horrible, but I’m very good at what I do, and that upsets people in our structure. The players know how good I am, especially in terms of improving prize money for them, and that pisses off the tournaments. It annoys them that, even in a compromised state, I’ve been able to outwit, outmaneuver, outstrategize and out-mobilize them,” said Justin Gimelstob.
Justin Gimelstob is currently the player representative for ATP. The ongoing controversy led to many demanding to remove Justin Gimelstob from his position. But the decision is up to the player council, which is headed by Novak Djokovic.
“Now that the judgment is in, the player council should pick another candidate on May 14 to represent men’s tennis at board level.’
“If contrary information is revealed in the civil case that I’d welcome Justin to run for a board position again, is he so wishes. There’s good in Justin that many people don’t get to see but clearly what happened is unacceptable on so many levels, ” said Darren Cahill, a former player, and coach.
There are currently 12 members in the current structure of the ATP Council. But two of the members are not eligible to vote in the upcoming vote on May 14. John Isner, the member of the council is expected to take Gimelstob’s side. He has hired Justin as an unpaid advisor.
However, there’s still a chance that Justin Gimelstob will not retain his spot as 4 members are of the interest of removing him from the post. Chris Kermode, who was ousted by Justin, tournament representatives, Gavin Forbes, Mark Webster, and Charles Humphrey Smith are among the four members who want to remove Justin from the board. But Chris Kermode and Gimelstob cannot vote and so it all depends on Straka, Humphrey Smith, Forbes, Edges and Inglot to make a decision about Justin Gimelstob.
Only time will tell what decision would come out of the voting on May 14. Tennis fans and pundits will hope for the best outcome for the spirit of the sport.