The suspension of two players for match-fixing by the Tennis Integrity Unit has drawn protests, with details of the offense becoming known since the announcement.

The players, Frenchman Elie Rousset and Italy's Walter Trusendi, were given six-month suspensions and fined $5,000 for violating anti-corruption rules. As in other cases, the TIU did not give significant details of their conduct.

However, the players revealed that the offense occurred at a Challenger in Morrocco, where a conversation between them was heard and reported by an official. The 25-year-old Rousset, ranked No. 576, had lost in qualifying and was first in line for the main draw should someone withdraw. The higher-ranked Trusendi, who was scheduled to play a first-round match, approached him to say that he was injured and would withdraw from the event, allowing Rousset to play, if Rousset would give him the first-round prize money of 326 Euros he would have received for competing in the match. If not, the No. 425-ranked Trusendi said he would play and retire.

The Frenchman said he had gone along with it since he understood the reasoning and it was common practice. "Because he could have gone on court, played three games and announced he was stopping," Rousset told L'Equipe. "It happens every week. It doesn't seem to me to be something that bad. It's not in the rules, but it's good sense."

The first-round match was against his doubles partner, Richard Becker, with Rousset losing in singles but reaching the doubles final with Becker, Bloomberg noted. Rousset's suspension allows a three-month reduction for good behavior, which would also require payment of only $2,000 of the $5,000 fine.

For Trusendi, the small amount of prize money involved in the first-round match had large repercussions. "I did the calculations," he told an Italian newspaper. "I was wrong. One shouldn't do these things. I should have gone, played one game, retired and got the prize money, and nothing would have happened.

Tennis anti-corruption rules prohibit players from contriving to fix the course of a match. Several players have criticized the decision to suspend Rousset, particularly his fellow French players.