Frederico Luzzi was fined $50,000 and suspended by the ATP for 200 days for betting on matches. He becomes the fifth Italian tennis player to be punished for betting on matches.

Luzzi is the first of the five to be sanctioned for betting on himself, which he did once - a $10 wager on himself to win.

This rash of Italian players being punished may be partly explained by cultural differences. For example, players from the United States know of the stigma of Pete Rose betting on baseball, even if they are a generation or two younger than the former Cincinnati Reds manager, and surely would be wary about gambling on their sport.

Tennis is the third most heavily bet sport (behind soccer and horse racing) in Europe and the explosion of online wagering has obviously made it easier for players with down time between matches, or during weather delays, to use a computer and make bets on sports, including tennis.

Quoted on regarding the Galimberti suspension and fine two weeks ago, the president of the ATP player council, Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia, said, “I personally believe the suspension [100 days] was too harsh, but I definitely agree that the fine [$35,000] was good enough, maybe even give them a little bit higher fine, but just let them play. They bet on matches they weren’t involved in. They just really didn’t know it was the rule. And the moment they realized they were doing wrong, they stopped.”

All the Italian players apparently wagered with the same online firm – the Austrian-based Interwetten.