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Ex-Southampton striker Dexter Blackstock hit with three month ban after breaking FA betting rules
FORMER Saints striker Dexter Blackstock has been hit with a suspended three-month ban and fined after admitting breaking the Football Association's betting rules.
The FA has imposed the ban on Blackstock, who is currently recovering from a serious knee injury sustained during a loan spell at Leeds in December, after last month charging the 27-year-old with multiple breaches of conduct.
A statement on thefa.com said: ''Nottingham Forest's Dexter Blackstock has been suspended from all football activity for three months after he admitted multiple breaches of FA Rule E8 for misconduct in relation to betting.
''However, the Independent Regulatory Commission ordered that the player's suspension be stayed until 31 May 2016 and will only be automatically invoked upon a proven breach of the FA Betting Rules during that period.
''Following the Independent Regulatory Commission hearing, Blackstock was also fined £60,000.''
Blackstock, who signed a new four-and-a-half-year contract at the City Ground last season, last played for Forest in October and later that month he was sent out on loan to Sky Bet Championship rivals Leeds.
After four appearances for the Yorkshire club, he suffered a season-ending knee injury in training ahead of Leeds' league game against Blackburn.
He is not expected to play again until October, when Stuart Pearce will have begun his tenure as Forest manager.
Blackstock made his name at Saints, becoming the club's first ever player to come on as a sub in a competitive game and score a hat-trick.
He did that in a League Cup tie against Colchester at St Mary's in October 2004.
The following month, still aged 18, he scored his first league goal for the club in a 2-1 derby win against Harry Redknapp's Portsmouth.
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