French tennis player Mathieu Montcourt (24), who was recently banned for betting on matches, has been found dead in Paris. The French tennis federation reported that Montcourt died overnight Monday but the cause of death is not yet known, and an autopsy will be conducted. French media reports suggest that the 119th-ranked Montcourt was found dead by his girlfriend in the stairwell of his Paris apartment.
In May, Montcourt was handed a five-week ban and fined $12,000 for betting on other matches. That ban took effect Monday.
French tennis federation's technical director Patrice Dominguez told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Montcourt's girlfriend became alarmed when Montcourt failed to arrive.
"She was with a friend in Mathieu Montcourt's apartment," Dominguez said. "They came out after a while, having left him messages, and noticed that he was lying on the floor next to his bike. They called the (ambulance), but unfortunately he was already dead."
Montcourt complained during the French Open that his punishment for gambling on other matches was too harsh, saying that he never bet more than $3 at any time, and never on his own matches - a fact confirmed by the ATP, which oversees the men's tour.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport said Montcourt had wagered a total of $192 on 36 tennis events in 2005. It reduced his suspension on appeal from eight weeks to five.
Source: InfoPowa News
Update (July 9): Reuters is reporting that French tennis player Mathieu Montcourt (24), who died suddenly in Paris this week, apparently succumbed to a cardiac arrest. The news service quotes a French police source who released the results of a preliminary autopsy.