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Last Updated: Friday, 18 January 2008, 04:01 GMT
Baghdatis caught up in race row
Marcos Baghdatis
Baghdatis gets huge support when playing in Melbourne
Marcos Baghdatis has defended his actions after a video in which he appeared to chant anti-Turkish slogans was aired in Australia.

The Greek Cypriot player is currently in Melbourne for the Australian Open.

In the video, he is seen holding a flare and chanting "Turks Out" with the Hellas Fan Club at a barbeque in 2007.

He said: "I was supporting the interest of my country, Cyprus, while protesting against a situation that is not recognised by the United Nations."

Baghdatis added: "Now I would like to concentrate on the tournament and ask everyone to respect that. I love the Australian Open and want to do well here."

Fans from the Hellas Fan Club were involved in a row at Melbourne Park on Tuesday while supporting Greece's Konstantinos Economides against in his match Fernando Gonzalez.

The incident saw police use pepper spray to subdue rowdy fans, with 10 people ejected and three arrested.

Baghdatis, who was the runner-up at the 2006 Australian Open, is due to face Australian Lleyton Hewitt in the third round of the tournament on Saturday.

SEE ALSO
Aussie Open photos
18 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Australian Open order of play
12 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Australian Open draw
11 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Tennis on the BBC
07 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Sport editors' blog
11 Jan 08 |  UKFS Homepage


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