Berlin: Boris Becker said escaping jail for tax evasion was the most significant win of his life, surpassing his three Wimbledon triumphs.
“Had I not won Wimbledon at 17, I would not have had to fight this battle at 34,” said Becker, who was handed a two-year suspended jail term and a heavy fine by a Munich court on Thursday.
“If I had not become so famous and rich, the tax authorities would not have been so interested in me,” the fallen German tennis hero was quoted as saying in the Bild on Friday.
“Therefore those two fights (Wimbledon and the tax trial) can be compared. The most important win was the one in court. Had I lost there, I would have faced a couple of very bitter years.”
Becker stood accused of having claimed residence in the tax haven of Monaco while actually staying in Munich between 1991 and 1993. He admitted in court that he had made a mistake by dodging tax but then survived the threat of being handed a three-and-a-half-year jail sentence, which was demanded by the state prosecutor.
The court eventually gave him a suspended term.